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10 Things you didn't Know about Northwell Health CEO Michael Dowling

Michael Dowling

Michael Dowling is both the CEO and the President of Northwell Health. He is interesting in that he is willing to comment on a wide range of societal issues that other healthcare executives avoid. As such, it should come as no surprise to learn that Dowling has been very vocal about the recent COVID-19 crisis.

1. Grew Up in Limerick, Ireland

Generally speaking, when people think of limericks, they think of the often-rude, often-humorous poems rather than both the city and the county of the same name that can be found in Ireland. There is something of a connection in that the name of the poems is thought to be a reference to either the city or the county, but the exact nature of the reference remains unclear. In any case, Dowling grew up in the city of Limerick in the county of Limerick, which holds considerable influence as one of the most populous cities in Ireland.

2. Studied At University College Cork

Initially, Dowling studied at University College Cork, which perhaps unsurprisingly, can be found in the city of Cork. The school was founded in the 19th century along with two counterparts in Belfast and Galway because of Queen Victoria's efforts to endow new colleges in Ireland, with the result that it became a part of the Queen's University of Ireland. In the 20th century, the school plus two counterparts in Dublin and Galway became the constituent colleges of the National University of Ireland. Nowadays, University College Cork is a full university in most respects, with the sole exception being the awarding of degrees and diplomas that remains the power of the National University instead.

3. Studied At Fordham University

Later, Dowling studied for his master's degree at Fordham University. Said school is situated in New York City. However, it is interesting to note that it is the oldest of the Jesuit universities that can be found in the northeastern United States, which in turn, make it the third oldest of the universities that can be found in the whole of New York state. Unsurprisingly, this means that Fordham University has some very well-known alumni, with an excellent example being the current governor of New York Andrew Cuomo.

4. Used to Teach

Dowling is someone who can call upon a wide range of experience built up over the course of a lifetime. For instance, he used to teach at the university level. In one case, Dowling taught social policy, which is very much in line with his current choice of career. Meanwhile, in another case, Dowling taught public health at a Harvard-run program for people interested in continuing education.

5. Used to Be In Government

Besides academia, Dowling has spent some time in government as well. However, he didn't do so as an elected official. Instead, Dowling was a part of the bureaucracy responsible for implementing the policies of those elected officials. Moreover, he was a high-ranking part, seeing as how he held positions such as the director of Health, Education, and Human Service for the state of New York.

6. Served As COO Before Becoming CEO

Northwell Health isn't the first place where Dowling has held an executive position in the private sphere. For instance, he was a senior vice president at Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield beforehand. However, it is interesting to note that Dowling started out as an executive vice president as well as a chief operating officer (COO) at Northwell Health before rising to the position of CEO. For those who are unfamiliar, COO are responsible for overseeing an organization's operations, meaning that they tend to be very high-ranked. In fact, it is common for a COO to serve as the second-in-command to a CEO because their respective responsibilities have so much overlap.

7. Believes In the Importance of Isolation

Unsurprisingly, Dowling is one of the numerous individuals who have stressed the importance of isolation in combating COVID-19 because that makes it more difficult for the infectious disease to spread from person to person.

8. He Acknowledged the Economic Impact

On the same topic, Dowling has acknowledged that the isolation will have a huge economic impact because of the mass closure of businesses as well as other consequences. However, as he sees it, the matter isn't a choice between an economic impact and no economic impact but rather a less serious economic impact and a more serious economic impact. After all, even normal sicknesses are more than capable of causing significant disruptions to national economies. Never mind the fact that COVID-19 has a much higher death rate than the seasonal flu while still being ridiculously infectious.

9. Believes that the CDC Should Receive More Support

Speaking of which, Dowling has expressed the opinion that the CDC should receive more financial support in a reversal of the previous trend of consecutive cuts. As he sees it, there will be more infectious diseases in the times to come, meaning that the CDC and similar organizations will have an important role to play in protecting public health. Some people might be tempted to suggest closing borders to prevent such things from spreading from country to country, but that is either impossible or next-to-impossible in a globalized world. For proof, look no further than the fact that while North Korea is still claiming that it has no confirmed cases of COVID-19, its economy has still taken a serious hammering in spite of the fact that it is one of the most isolated countries that can be found on the planet.

10. Realistic About the Fight Against COVID-19

Dowling has been very realistic while still remaining optimistic when it comes to the fight against COVID-19. For instance, he has said that no one knows when the coronavirus will be brought under control, which makes sense because it is still much too soon for even the most authoritative sources to be making perfect predictions on the matter. Never mind the fact that the novel coronavirus is, well, novel, meaning that there isn't a source of previous experience to fall back on.

Allen Lee

Written by Allen Lee

Allen Lee is a Toronto-based freelance writer who studied business in school but has since turned to other pursuits. He spends more time than is perhaps wise with his eyes fixed on a screen either reading history books, keeping up with international news, or playing the latest releases on the Steam platform, which serve as the subject matter for much of his writing output. Currently, Lee is practicing the smidgen of Chinese that he picked up while visiting the Chinese mainland in hopes of someday being able to read certain historical texts in their original language.

Read more posts by Allen Lee

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