When you need medical attention in New Jersey, whether minor or urgent, chances are you’ll find yourself at one of the more than 170 RWJBarnabas Health facilities throughout the state.
Formed in 2016 through the merger of two of the state’s largest healthcare systems, RWJBarnabas Health covers the full spectrum of New Jersey’s medical needs by providing 5 million people in nine counties with convenient access to a vast array of quality, cost-efficient and coordinated healthcare services. This includes 11 acute care hospitals, four children’s hospitals, 21 specialty care centers, 14 pediatric centers, 33 outpatient centers, six pharmacies, 22 laboratories, 23 sports rehabilitation facilities, five wellness centers, 21 imaging centers, medical schools, and more.
“We aim to be the organization in the state of New Jersey that brings the highest quality clinical care … to ensure that the families of this state are well cared for,” explains Michellene Davis, RWJBarnabas’ executive vice president and chief corporate affairs officer.
RWJBarnabas Health, which regularly captures national awards for outstanding quality and safety, is the state’s largest private employer with more than 33,000 employees, 9,000 physicians and 1,000 residents and interns. In July, it announced a public-private partnership with Rutgers University that will provide patients with increased access to a world-class academic health system offering clinical innovation, groundbreaking research, newly developed centers of excellence, and even more healthcare providers.
Davis is no stranger to the New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA), or state government. Before joining Barnabas Health in 2009 she served as chief policy counsel to then-Gov. Jon Corzine, as well as acting state Treasurer. In these positions, Davis saw firsthand the impact of NJBIA’s powerful advocacy efforts on behalf of its member companies, who collectively employ over 1 million New Jersey workers.
“Hospitals and healthcare systems are here in order to treat people,” Davis said. “But we are also businesses, and in order to be here for the long term, so that the families of this great state are always taken care of, we need to make certain that someone is taking care of us too. NJBIA has time and time again served in that role and we are grateful for that.”
Davis noted NJBIA has a team of full-time lobbyists who are constantly in and out of the Statehouse advocating for the interests of its member companies and their workers. NJBIA works on a wide array of policy issues important to its member companies, including education and workforce development, health affairs, taxation, economic development and more.
RWJBarnabas Health has been an NJBIA member since 1975. “The advocacy from the organization, and the way in which the leaders of the organization ensure that the state’s decision makers have a full understanding of the breadth and depth of the implications of any policy, was what ensured that when I got to the corporate side, that I was in an organization that maintained a membership with NJBIA,” Davis said.“NJBIA has consistently been at the forefront at leading the shaping of the State of New Jersey’s policies.”
Michele Siekerka, NJBIA President and CEO, said RWJBarnabas has been a great partner.
“Michellene’s active involvement with NJBIA makes her a perfect example of someone who seizes the opportunities that NJBIA provides to engage, network, mentor and help the agenda in Trenton on policies that are important to her company and her industry,” Siekerka said, noting that Davis chairs NJBIA’s Health Affairs Committee and served on the association’s executive leadership panel for the Women Business Leaders Forum.
NJBIA’s educational events and programs are another valuable reason to be an association member, Davis said.
“NJBIA provides some of the best educational programming; they really provide you with access to opportunity with thought leaders,” Davis said. “I chair the Health Affairs Committee and I will tell you we have had some of the best discussions with the state’s thought leaders about issues that inform and shape our industry.
“NJBIA is a fantastic advocate for the business community,” Davis said. “It behooves everyone, in every capacity, whether you’re a small business or a large corporation to ensure that you are a member of this organization,” Davis said.
For more information about RWJBarnabas Health physicians, services, or classes, click here.