Hackensack University Medical Center and Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine Welcome Howard M. Ross, M.D. as Chair of Surgery/Surgeon-in Chief

HACKENSACK, N.J. – Hackensack Meridian Health is proud to welcome nationally recognized Colon and Rectal Surgeon, Howard M. Ross, M.D., as Chair of Surgery/Surgeon-in-Chief of Hackensack University Medical Center, and as Professor and Chair of the Department of Surgery at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. 

With more than 20 years of experience as a board-certified colon and rectal surgeon, Dr. Ross specializes in minimally invasive surgical approaches to treating colon and rectal cancer.  Dr. Ross also provides leading-edge surgical care for ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, polyps, and other colorectal conditions. His research interests include the adoption of new technologies, surgical outcomes, surgical education and health disparities.  Dr. Ross is broadly published and the editor of four noted textbooks, including Robotic Approaches to Colorectal Surgery & Minimally Invasive Approaches to Colon and Rectal Disease.

Before his appointments at Hackensack University Medical Center and Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, Dr. Ross served in various roles at Temple University Health System, Meridian Health System, and University of Pennsylvania Health System. Most recently he was Vice Chair, Department of Surgery; Professor and Chief, Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery; and Program Director for the General Surgery Residency at Temple University Health System.

As Chair of Surgery/Surgeon-in-Chief, Dr. Ross will oversee 9 Divisions of Surgery that include

Bariatrics; Breast; Colorectal; General Surgery; Pediatrics; Surgical Oncology; Thoracic Surgery; Transplant; and Trauma taking place in 18 regular operating room suites; 4 pediatric OR suites; 2 Hybrid OR suites; 3 plastic & reconstructive surgery OR suites; and 12 suites in our Center for Ambulatory Surgery. Additionally, Dr. Ross will preside over 24 state-of-the-art operating rooms to be housed in the new Helena Theurer Pavilion opening on the campus of Hackensack Meridian Hackensack University Medical Center in 2022. 

“We are excited to welcome Dr. Ross in his new leadership role,” said Mark Sparta, FACHE, president and chief hospital executive, Hackensack University Medical Center. “His expertise and years of experience will be a tremendous asset to Hackensack University Medical Center and the community we serve.”

Dr. Ross earned his medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine in Rochester, New York. He completed his general surgery residency at the University of Connecticut in Hartford, Connecticut, and his colon and rectal surgery residency at Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Massachusetts. He completed his surgical oncology research fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, New York. 

“The appointment of Dr. Ross is a significant addition to our group of specialists,” said Lisa Tank, M.D., chief medical officer, Hackensack Meridian Hackensack University Medical Center. “We are excited about his plans to continue to build and expand all of our surgical programs, especially Transplant, Trauma and Colorectal surgery through new techniques and cutting-edge technology.”

As Chair of Surgery/Surgeon-in-Chief Dr. Ross will actively guide the surgical education of future physicians, teaching the art and science of surgery to our residents and medical students.

“Dr. Ross’s reputation precedes him,” said Bonita Stanton, M.D., the founding dean of the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. “His contributions to our growing School promise to be invaluable.”

Dr. Ross is a fellow of the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, and the American College of Surgeons.  He has served as president of the Philadelphia Academy of Surgery and the New Jersey Society of Colon and Rectal Surgery.   Dr. Ross has received numerous honors, including Top Doctor recognitions, Physician of the Year from the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, and multiple student and resident teaching awards.   

“I am thrilled to join the team at Hackensack University Medical Center’s renowned Department of Surgery, and I look forward to working with each of my colleagues to provide collaborative, high-quality care for our patients,” said Dr. Ross.

ABOUT HACKENSACK MERIDIAN HEALTH HACKENSACK UNIVERSITY MEDICAL CENTER

Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center, a 781-bed nonprofit teaching and research hospital located in Bergen County, NJ, is the largest provider of inpatient and outpatient services in the state. Founded in 1888 as the county’s first hospital, it is now part of the largest, most comprehensive, and truly integrated health care network in New Jersey, offering a complete range of medical services, innovative research, and life-enhancing care, which is comprised of 35,000 team members and more than 7,000 physicians. Hackensack University Medical Center is ranked #2 in New Jersey and #59 in the country in U.S. News & World Report’s 2019-20 Best Hospital rankings and is ranked high-performing in the U.S. in colon cancer surgery, lung cancer surgery, COPD, heart failure, heart bypass surgery, aortic valve surgery, abdominal aortic aneurysm repair, knee replacement and hip replacement. Out of 4,500 hospitals evaluated, Hackensack is one of only 57 that received a top rating in all nine procedures and conditions. Hackensack University Medical Center is one of only five major academic medical centers in the nation to receive Healthgrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals Award for five or more years in a row. Becker’s Hospital Review recognized Hackensack University Medical Center as one of the 100 Great Hospitals in America 2018. The medical center is one of the top 25 green hospitals in the country according to Practice Greenhealth, and received 26 Gold Seals of Approval™ by The Joint Commission – more than any other hospital in the country. It was the first hospital in New Jersey and second in the nation to become a Magnet® recognized hospital for nursing excellence; receiving its sixth consecutive designation in 2019. Hackensack University Medical Center has created an entire campus of award-winning care, including: John Theurer Cancer Center, a consortium member of the NCI-designated Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center; the Heart & Vascular Hospital; and the Sarkis and Siran Gabrellian Women’s and Children’s Pavilion, which houses the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital and Donna A. Sanzari Women’s Hospital, which was designed with The Deirdre Imus Environmental Health Center® and listed on the Green Guide’s list of Top 10 Green Hospitals in the U.S. Hackensack University Medical Center is the Hometown Hospital of the New York Giants and the New York Red Bulls and is Official Medical Services Provider to THE NORTHERN TRUST PGA Golf Tournament. It remains committed to its community through fundraising and community events especially the Tackle Kids Cancer Campaign providing much needed research at the Children’s Cancer Institute housed at the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital. To learn more, visit www.HackensackUMC.org.

ABOUT HACKENSACK MERIDIAN SCHOOL OF MEDICINE

The Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, the first private medical school in New Jersey in more than 50 years, welcomed its first class of students in 2018 to its On3 campus in Nutley and Clifton. Hackensack Meridian Health assumed its independent operation in July 2020. The school’s vision is that each person in New Jersey, and in the United States, regardless of race or socioeconomic status, will enjoy the highest levels of wellness in an economically and behaviorally sustainable fashion. The School’s unique curriculum focuses on linking the basic science with clinical relevance, through an integrated curriculum in a team-oriented, collaborative environment. The school prides itself on outreach, through programs like the Human Dimension, which is active in communities across New Jersey. 

ABOUT HACKENSACK MERIDIAN HEALTH

Hackensack Meridian Health is a leading not-for-profit health care organization that is the largest, most comprehensive, and truly integrated health care network in New Jersey, offering a complete range of medical services, innovative research, and life-enhancing care. 

Hackensack Meridian Health comprises 17 hospitals from Bergen to Ocean counties, which includes three academic medical centers – Hackensack University Medical Center in Hackensack, Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, JFK Medical Center in Edison; two children’s hospitals – Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital in Hackensack, K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital in Neptune; nine community hospitals – Bayshore Medical Center in Holmdel, Mountainside Medical Center in Montclair, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Palisades Medical Center in North Bergen, Pascack Valley Medical Center in Westwood, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Old Bridge, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Perth Amboy, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, and Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin; a behavioral health hospital – Carrier Clinic in Belle Mead; and two rehabilitation hospitals – JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute in Edison and Shore Rehabilitation Institute in Brick. 

Additionally, the network has more than 500 patient care locations throughout the state which include ambulatory care centers, surgery centers, home health services, long-term care and assisted living communities, ambulance services, lifesaving air medical transportation, fitness and wellness centers, rehabilitation centers, urgent care centers and physician practice locations. Hackensack Meridian Health has more than 36,000 team members, and 7,000 physicians and is a distinguished leader in health care philanthropy, committed to the health and well-being of the communities it serves.

The network’s notable distinctions include having four of its hospitals are among the top hospitals in New Jersey for 2020-21, according to U.S. News & World Report. Additionally, the health system has more top-ranked hospitals than any system in New Jersey. Children’s Health is again ranked a top provider of pediatric health care in the United States and earned top 50 rankings in the annual U.S. News’ 2020-21 Best Children’s Hospitals report.   Other honors include consistently achieving Magnet® recognition for nursing excellence from the American Nurses Credentialing Center and being named to Becker’s Healthcare’s “150 Top Places to Work in Healthcare/2019” list. 

The Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, the first private medical school in New Jersey in more than 50 years, welcomed its first class of students in 2018 to its On3 campus in Nutley and Clifton. The Hackensack Meridian Center for Discovery and Innovation (CDI), housed in a fully renovated state-of-the-art facility, seeks to translate current innovations in science to improve clinical outcomes for patients with cancer, infectious diseases and other life-threatening and disabling conditions.

Additionally, the network partnered with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to find more cures for cancer faster while ensuring that patients have access to the highest quality, most individualized cancer care when and where they need it. 

Hackensack Meridian Health is a member of AllSpire Health Partners, an interstate consortium of leading health systems, to focus on the sharing of best practices in clinical care and achieving efficiencies. 

To learn more, visit www.hackensackmeridianhealth.org.