Press Conference Comments

October 13, 2015

Comments from Rich Miller, President and CEO, Virtua


  • It is with immense pleasure that I announce today the launch of a strategic alliance between Virtua and Penn Medicine for the purpose of creating easier access to care by growing programs in South Jersey, and by facilitating connection with tertiary and quaternary care provided by Penn.
  • The scope of this alliance for the immediate future will include cancer and neuroscience programs.

Cancer Services

  • Penn Medicine is a world-renowned leader in cancer and neuroscience treatment, research and education. 
  • Penn has been recognized by the National Cancer Institute as a Comprehensive Cancer Center since 1973, one of only 41 institutions in the nation to consistently receive this designation. 
  • This is of significant importance to the families in our community dealing with a diagnosis of cancer. In 2014 alone, almost 4,000 people were diagnosed with cancer at Virtua. And in the next decade, as Baby Boomers age, the number of patients who depend on Virtua for cancer care will rise significantly. 
  • Penn has been ranked among the top 10 hospitals in the nation and has been recognized for excellence in 13 specialties, including cancer and neuroscience. 
  • This is why when selecting a partner, we wanted one that could supplement our services with the finest in tertiary and quaternary care -- and one that is local -- committed to our region -- and known and preferred by our patients. 
  • Penn Medicine offers not only the best in clinical care, but enables us to amplify our program by delivering a broad range of services including clinical trials. 
  • Together, we will invest substantial resources to develop programs around clinical integration, information technology, population health and research, and ambulatory services. 
  • Virtua has served its patients with a well-regarded cancer program for over 20 years. Our cancer program is accredited by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer, and is distinguished as the recipient of the Commission’s Outstanding Achievement Award for excellence four consecutive times. Only one out of ten programs nationwide has been designated with this honor. 
  • This alliance now provides our patients with easy access to complex and high acuity care at Penn Medicine including bone marrow transplants, advanced hematology and surgery, and second opinion services. 
  • Our collaboration will support and strengthen Virtua’s delivery of cancer care which includes programs focused on prevention, diagnosis and treatment. For cancer survivors and their families, we also provide services that help them reclaim their lives after cancer treatment. 
  • Penn’s extensive investment in cancer research and their leadership at the forefront of cancer treatment will help advance our programs by providing resources to our clinicians and our patients. 

Neurology Services

  • In the area of neuroscience, we will collaborate for the treatment of diagnoses such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease, brain injury and dementia.
  • Beginning in January, Penn surgeons will perform surgery at Virtua Memorial Hospital in Burlington County so patients no longer have to leave Virtua for this advanced care. 
  • Virtua’s hospitals have already been nationally recognized for its excellence in stopping stroke and preserving brain function by the American Heart Association with the “Get with the Guidelines” Stroke Gold Award. With this collaboration, we will be able to expand the scope of our neuroscience program even further. 
  • Our mission at Virtua is to help people be well, get well and stay well, and with Penn’s mission to advance science and patient care, those who we serve stand to benefit. 

Beyond Cancer and Neurology Services

  • Beyond cancer, our proximity and mutual commitment to high quality patient care will enable us evaluate broader collaboration, exploring such areas as home care and home infusion services. 
  • Through this alliance, we will be able to reduce duplication of resources, increase efficiencies and decrease health care costs. 
  • The alliance will also foster collaboration among the medical professionals of both organizations, ensure the appropriate delivery of care in the appropriate setting, eliminate gaps in care, and improves access to services. 
  • Together, we will work to enhance the patient experience and better coordinate care for all residents in the communities that Virtua serves. 
  • We will align our medical records and information technology systems to build a strong foundation for clinical coordination, integration and communication in order to ensure the highest quality of patient care. 

Updated December 29, 2017