Baptist Health South Florida

Baptist Health Names Melissa Emerson Chief Operating Officer of Bethesda Hospital

December 20, 2023

BOYNTON BEACH, FL – December 20, 2023 – Baptist Health announced that Melissa P. Emerson, MBA, BSN, R.N., has been named the new chief operating officer of Bethesda Hospital. Effective immediately, Ms. Emerson will focus on broadening service line growth, strengthening clinical outcomes, improving patient satisfaction and safety, and expanding engagement opportunities for all employees, amongst other responsibilities. 

“Melissa is a highly accomplished healthcare leader whose expertise and achievements will help build upon Baptist Health’s culture of quality and excellence,” said Jared Smith, chief executive officer of Bethesda Hospital, part of Baptist Health. “Throughout her longstanding career, she has worked to establish safe, effective, and patient-centered care, and we are confident that she will be an asset to both our team and the community.” 

Ms. Emerson first started her career as a personal care assistant and nurse extern at Bethesda Hospital nearly two decades ago. She has now come full circle with her new role after serving as chief nursing officer for Broward Health Coral Springs. A Boca Raton resident, she also has experience working with Good Samaritan Medical Center and Delray Medical Center. 

Ms. Emerson earned her Associate in Science in Nursing from Palm Beach Community College and her Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Business Administration degrees from Florida Atlantic University. An active member of the community, she currently serves on the Florida Atlantic University Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing Advisory Board.

About Baptist Health 
Baptist Health is the largest healthcare organization in the region, with 12 hospitals, more than 27,000 employees, 4,000 physicians and 200 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning across Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties. Baptist Health has internationally renowned institutes specializing in cancer care, brain and spine care, heart and vascular care and orthopedic care. In addition, it includes Baptist Health Medical Group; Baptist Health Quality Network; and The Baptist Health PineApp, a virtual health platform. A not-for-profit organization supported by philanthropy and committed to its faith-based charitable mission of medical excellence, Baptist Health has been recognized by Fortune as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America and is the most awarded healthcare system in South Florida by U.S. News and World Report. For more information, visit and connect with us on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), Instagram, TikTok and LinkedIn.



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