Mississippi Baptist’s Chief Nursing Officer Bobbie K. Ware has been named CEO of Baptist Medical Center in Jackson.

Ware’s promotion is the latest leadership shift since Mississippi Baptist Health Systems merged with the larger Baptist Memorial Healthcare of Memphis.

Ware, who also was named chief operating officer of the former Mississippi Baptist Health Systems in 2016, is the first registered nurse to take the reins as chief executive of Baptist Medical Center.

“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. Bobbie has developed a second-to-none nursing and clinical team and supports an environment that promotes exceptional patient care,” said Chris Anderson in a press release.

In the aftermath of the shake-up, Anderson moved from his role as CEO of Mississippi Baptist to vice president of Mississippi operations for the new system.

Under Ware’s leadership, Baptist Medical Center received the nation’s top honor for nursing excellence, known as “Magnet status” in March. Only seven percent of hospitals in America have been granted Magnet recognition and Baptist is the only hospital in Mississippi to receive this designation, according to Baptist Memorial.

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,” Ware said in a press release. “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.”

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, according to a press release from the hospital.

“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.”

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 and manages 24,000 admissions annually.

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Larrison Campbell is a Greenville native who reports on politics with an emphasis on public health. She received a bachelor’s from Wesleyan University and a master’s from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.Larrison is a 2018 National Press Foundation fellow in public health, a 2019 Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation of Massachusetts fellow in health care reporting and a 2019 Center for Health Journalism National Fellow.