Baptist Names Bobbie K. Ware as New CEO of Baptist Medical Center

Friday, May 19, 2017

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Bobbie K. Ware, MHSA, BSN, RN, NEA-BC, FACHE, has been named chief executive officer of Baptist Medical Center in Jackson, Miss. In 2007, Ware was promoted to Mississippi Baptist Health Systems chief nursing officer. Along with those duties, she was promoted to the Baptist Medical Center chief operating officer in 2016.

Ware’s newly created position mirrors the leadership structure of hospitals affiliated with Memphis, Tennessee-based Baptist Memorial Health Care, the organization that merged with Baptist Medical Center’s parent organization ‒ Mississippi Baptist Health Systems ‒ on May 1.

 “This new role is important to continue developing a local strategic vision and policies for the hospital,” said Chris Anderson, former Mississippi Baptist Health Systems president and CEO, who has been appointed vice president of Mississippi operations for the combined Baptist Memorial Health Care system.

 For the first time, a registered nurse will serve as Baptist Medical Center’s top executive, and Anderson points to Ware’s nursing skills and leadership experience as significant benefits to the hospital.

 “Bobbie is a strong and experienced executive with a great passion for Baptist and our mission. Patient care is the main factor in every decision she makes,” said Anderson.  “Bobbie has developed a second-to-none nursing and clinical team and supports an environment that promotes exceptional patient care.”

 Ware, an Oxford native, began her career in 1987 as a critical care staff nurse at the Oxford-Lafayette County Hospital. While in nursing school, she conducted her clinical rotations at Baptist Medical Center and returned there to become an operating room nurse in 1989. Since 1991, she has served in leadership positions at Baptist Medical Center, including director of home care, director of Baptist Cancer Services and vice president of patient care operations.

 Ware said she believes using a multidisciplinary team approach and evidence-based practices are essential for high-quality patient care.

 “I knew Baptist was a special place once I completed my clinical rotations here. After leaving Jackson for a brief time, I came back to be a nurse at Baptist,” Ware added. “Patient care is of utmost importance, and to support this practice, we look at synergies among all the professions in the patient care settings for input on how to best care for patients.”

 Under Ware’s leadership, in March 2017, Baptist Medical Center received the nation’s top honor for nursing excellence, called Magnet™. Only 7 percent of hospitals in America have been granted Magnet recognition, and Baptist is the only hospital in Mississippi to receive this designation. The Magnet Recognition Program® is given by the American Nurses' Credentialing Center, an affiliate of the American Nurses Association.

 In addition, Healthgrades, an online resource for information about physicians and hospitals, placed Baptist Medical Center in the top 2 percent of all hospitals nationally for patient safety and outstanding patient experience. Baptist Medical Center has received seven disease-specific certifications through the Joint Commission, which accredits and certifies nearly 21,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States.

 “As indicated by these quality awards, Bobbie has a proven track record of success in leading the medical center,” added Anderson. “She is a leader who can articulate the hospital’s mission and vision to the staff, physicians and community.”

 In 2000, Ware became director of Baptist Cancer Services and began working with physicians, staff, community members, patients and Baptist Medical Center’s Board of Trustees to create a comprehensive cancer center. Through research, planning and interviewing all these audiences, Baptist opened the Hederman Cancer Center in May 2002. Baptist Cancer Services treats more adult cancer patients than any other hospital in Mississippi.

 Ware has a master’s degree in health care administration and is a Fellow of the American College of HealthCare Executives, a Board-Certified Advanced Nurse Executive and a Six Sigma Green Belt. She was inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society and has been recognized as one of Mississippi Business Journal’s Top 40 under 40, American Cancer Society Volunteer of the Year, Mississippi Nurses Association Administrator of the Year, Mississippi College Graduate Program Alumni of the Year, Mississippi Business Journal Healthcare Hero and Girl Scouts Women of Distinction.

 Baptist Medical Center is a 628-licensed bed hospital established in 1911. Its medical staff includes approximately 600 board-certified physicians representing more than 50 specialties. It employs approximately 3,000 health care professionals, manages 24,000 admissions annually, and will see approximately 68,000 emergency department patients this year.

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