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News Room: Press Releases

Congressman Andrews praises Virtua for commitment to Camden

Virtua CEO Rich Miller, Congressman Rob Andrews, and Senator Donald Norcross met with staff and graduates of the Genesis School of Business at Virtua Camden for a roundtable discussion. Genesis is a long-standing tenant at Virtua Camden and provides education and training opportunities to the community.

Congressman Rob Andrews visited Genesis School of Business at Virtua Camden to mark the success of two programs that received federal funding with the Congressman’s assistance--Partnerships in Healthcare and the Camden Comprehensive Center for Fathers. The Congressman met with staff and graduates of the program, community leaders, local legislators, Virtua leadership and program supporters.

As the Congressman greeted guests, employees and visitors, he stated that Virtua CEO Rich Miller made a promise 10 years ago that Virtua would stay in Camden and create healthcare services that were of the greatest need for the city residents. Today, Virtua Camden is home to an emergency department, a primary care center, a dental center a children’s mental health center, a wide array of outpatient services, and also houses more than a dozen community service organizations.

“Virtua Camden has evolved from a struggling inpatient hospital into a thriving campus, alive with valuable programs and services,” said Andrews. “Rich Miller promised that Virtua would not abandon the city. That promise has been kept and Virtua Camden is a centerpiece of the community.”

The Genesis School of Business is a long-standing tenant at Virtua Camden and provides education and training programs to the community. The Congressman and Miller were joined by Senator Donald Norcross; Christopher Chekouras, Virtua VP and COO of Virtua Camden; Robert Hockel, Virtua Vice President of Ambulatory Services; Gloria Smith, Genesis Executive Director; and Catherine DeCheser, President and CEO, Community Planning & Advocacy Council (CPAC), at a roundtable discussion.

“Visitors to Virtua Camden on any given day find a flourishing community,” said Miller. “There are programs for children, a charter school, and even a farmer’s market. We are proud of our commitment to the City of Camden.”

Congressman Andrews helped secure the grant for the Partnerships in Healthcare in collaboration with Genesis, Virtua, and Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital to recruit and train inner city residents in conjunction with human resources leadership at both hospitals. All of the 111 recruits are residents of Camden and were trained in environmental and dietary services by the hospitals. A grant from the NJ Department of Labor helped Genesis achieve 100 percent job placement for the program graduates. Approximately 73 percent of recruits received training-related part-time positions which enabled them to subsequently get full-time jobs.

“These outcomes are a direct result of the partnership between CPAC, Genesis, Virtua and Lourdes,” said Smith. “The contribution by the health systems towards the students’ background checks, physical exams and uniforms is a testament to their commitment to the program.”
As one of New Jersey’s largest health systems, Virtua helps people be well, get well and stay well through a comprehensive range of health care services. Services are delivered through three health and wellness centers, three fitness centers, four acute care hospitals, primary and specialty physician practices with more than 240 physicians, urgent care centers, seven ambulatory surgery centers, home health services, two long-term care and rehabilitation centers, 12 paramedic units and a wide range of outpatient services. A leader in maternal and child health services, Virtua delivers more than 8,000 babies a year. Virtua also provides employment and wellness services to 1,700 businesses and corporations. An innovator in clinical and information technology such as electronic medical records, Virtua is recognized for its ground-breaking partnerships with GE Healthcare, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and the Fox Chase Cancer Center. Virtua employs more than 8,400 people and has been honored as the #1 Best Place to Work in the Delaware Valley every year since 2007. It is the recipient of the Consumer Choice Award from the National Research Corporation. For more information, visit  www.virtua.org or www.virtuabroadcastnetwork.org.