Meet Our CEO, Ninfa M. Saunders


Dr. Ninfa M. Saunders, FACHE

President and CEO of Navicent Health

Board of Directors- Ninfa M. Saunders, President and CEO of Navicent Health

Dr. Saunders currently serves as the President and CEO of Navicent Health, a nonprofit corporation whose primary purpose is to coordinate its affiliated entities in their mission of providing a comprehensive range of high-quality reasonably priced healthcare services to Georgians. Dr. Saunders oversees the operations of The Medical Center, Navicent Health as well as Navicent Health Foundation; Rehabilitation Hospital, Navicent Health; Home Health, Navicent Health; Health Services, Navicent Health; Pine Pointe, Navicent Health; and Carlyle Place, Navicent Health. Dr. Saunders also serves as the President and CEO of The Medical Center, Navicent Health, the second largest hospital in the state and a tertiary regional teaching medical center, the state's only nationally-verified Level I Trauma Center, a perinatal center, and twice designated Magnet® hospitals for nursing excellence. An Executive Co-founder of Stratus Healthcare, a collaborative partnership of hospitals both urban and rural, she remains focused on the fee-for-value framework rather than the fee-for-service model while ensuring right access, to the right care, at the right time at the right cost.

Dr. Saunders has more than 45 years of hospital administrative and clinical experience. Prior to her return to Georgia, she was the President and COO of Virtua Health, the largest health system in southern New Jersey, which operates four hospitals, two rehabilitation centers, senior services, home care, ambulatory and outpatient services. Prior to joining Virtua, she served on the Governor's Georgia Cancer Coalition, which was created by Governor Roy Barnes to develop regional centers of excellence for cancer prevention, detection, treatment and research using funds from the tobacco settlement. Previously, Dr. Saunders served as chief operating officer for the Dekalb Medical Center in Decatur, GA. For the preceding 13 years, Dr. Saunders served as director of nursing resources for Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, GA. From 1974-1980, she held various roles at St. Barnabas in Livingston, NJ, including assistant vice president of nursing, director of critical care, in-service instructor and assistant head nurse. She started her career as a staff nurse in the intensive care unit of Riley Memorial Hospital in Meridian, MS.

Dr. Saunders completed her Doctorate in Healthcare Administration at the Medical University of South Carolina. She earned a Master of Business Administration from Emory University in Atlanta, GA, a Master of Science in Nursing from the Rutgers University in Newark, NJ, and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Concordia College in Manila, Philippines. She received her Certification as a Black Belt in Six Sigma from the University of Michigan, College of Engineering. She also attended the Healthcare Executive Program at Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA, and the International Business Program at the London School of Business in London, England.

Appointed as Dean's Professor at the Mayers School of Business, she is a Distinguished Faculty at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. and an Associate Professor at Rutgers University, NJ, she also served as a faculty of the NCHL and GE Leadership Program at GE's Jack Welch Learning Center in Crotonville, New York. She is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, a board member of the American Heart Association, and a board member of the American Hospital Association, Institute for Diversity. Awarded the 2011 Woman of Distinction by the New Jersey Go Red for Women of the American Heart Association, Dr. Saunders also received the American Red Cross's 2012 Outstanding Citizenship and Good Neighbor Award.

Among Becker's Hospital Review 130 Women Hospital and Health System Leaders to Know for the fifth consecutive year, Saunders has been honored by the Georgia Diversity Council as one of Georgia's Most Powerful & Influential Women and was named one of 2017's Most Influential Women of the Mid-Market by CEO Connection. A Fellow of ACHE, Saunders serves on the board of directors for the American Hospital Association, Board member of the Georgia Hospital Alliance, Board Chair of Georgia Alliance of Community Hospitals and is the past Chair of the Institute for Diversity. She has also served on the board of the American Heart Association. The 2014 Georgia Alliance of Community Hospitals CEO of the Year, Saunders has also been included as one of Georgia Trend's 100 Most Influential Georgians and was named The (Macon) Telegraph's 2014 Person of the Year. She received the 2017 President's Award for Distinguished Service from the Macon (Ga.) Chapter of The Links. She currently serves as an Executive with the Fierce Healthcare CEO Advisory Board and as a frequent expert for Becker's Hospital Review and Healthcare Leaders national media roundtables.

×
×
×

Schedule a Callback

*required fields

Terms of Use

I give permission for Navicent to use the information I supply on this form to fulfill my request for a physician appointment and to contact me for that purpose.
I certify that I am at least 18 years old and I acknowledge that I have read and accept these terms and agree to use this form to request a physician appointment.
Because we value your privacy, your personal information will not be used other than to schedule an appointment.