Atiya Jaha-Rashidi has been named the first chief equity officer of Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, the hospital announced.
Rashidi, an RN, also was named vice president of community relations.
The new role is part of Newark Beth Israel Medical Center and RWJBarnabas Health’s commitment to become an anti-racist organization, which includes implementing policies and hiring practices that foster equity and inclusion.
Rashidi has more than 24 years of experience leading and coordinating community outreach initiatives at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center and Children’s Hospital of New Jersey, where she has held numerous leadership roles, including director of diversity and inclusion, director of patient experience and interim VP of community relations.
In her new role, Rashidi will oversee the development and implementation of employee and community initiatives that foster equity. In addition, she will continue to develop strong community partnerships with the aim of improving population health and reducing health care disparities.
“It is important that we are intentional about eliminating the disparities that exist within our health care system,” she said. “I am excited to move forward as we work to create the policies that will transform our healthcare delivery system for generations to come.”
Newark Beth Israel Medical Center ranks No. 4 in the nation for racial inclusivity, according to a recent report issued by the Lown Institute, a nonpartisan health care think tank. The national ranking highlights hospitals that are especially effective at serving people of color who live in the surrounding community.
Newark Beth CEO Darrell Terry said the new role will help the hospital streamline its focus on health equity.
“I am proud of the work we have done at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center to create diverse, equitable and inclusive environments,” he said. “This new position creates an opportunity to focus with even greater precision on racism and its disproportionate impact on the communities we serve.
“Ms. Rashidi brings a wealth of knowledge, expertise and passion to her role that will certainly propel us forward in our efforts to address the effects of racism.”
Rashidi has a Bachelor of Science in public health administration from Rutgers and a Master of Healthcare Administration from University of Arizona Global Campus.
To learn more about the RWJBarnabas Health Ending Racism Together initiative, click here.