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Virtua Health's Dennis Pullin Earns National Innovation Award

September 16, 2023 - Modern Healthcare, a leading industry magazine, has named Virtua Health's President and CEO Dennis Pulln among its "Top Innovators for 2023."

September 16, 2023

From a cancer-screening truck to a grocery store on wheels, Virtua's pioneering programs, led by president and CEO Pullin, are building healthier communities

Virtua Health is on a roll – literally. South Jersey’s largest health system has built a unique fleet of mobile health programs that bring vital services directly into communities with the greatest needs. Now, these efforts have won national recognition for President and CEO Dennis W. Pullin, FACHE.

Modern Healthcare, a leading industry magazine, has named Pullin among its “Top Innovators for 2023.” 

“The Top Innovators program honors leaders and organizations that are instituting innovation and leading transformative programs that achieve measurable results in improving care and contributing to clinical and financial goals,” stated Modern Healthcare.

“These winners are producing results and forging a path that others should follow,” said Mary Ellen Podmolik, the magazine’s editor-in-chief.

Profiles of the honorees are featured in the Sept. 18 issue of Modern Healthcare and online at

“This recognition from Modern Healthcare is a great honor and speaks to the dedication and talent of the entire Virtua Health workforce,” said Pullin. “In particular, we know our mobile services are having a tangible, positive impact on the people of South Jersey. And now, this national recognition will help further critical conversations about health equity.” 

Virtua’s mobile health programs address many community health needs and increase access to services. The initiative features four custom-designed, Virtua-staffed vehicles that travel throughout South Jersey, providing a range of health and wellness services. 

These welcoming programs-on-wheels are Virtua’s Eat Well Mobile Farmers Market and Mobile Grocery Store, Pediatric Mobile Services Unit, and brand-new Mobile Health and Cancer Screening Unit.  

Making A Difference
Both the Mobile Farmers Market and Mobile Grocery Store are helping people eat healthier, according to customer surveys, by providing healthy, affordable, and culturally relevant foods. In the first half of 2023, for example, 94% and 96% of responding customers, respectively, reported they eat more fruits and vegetables due to shopping at these programs. Similar proportions of customers report they prepare more nutritious meals and snacks, have learned how to choose or prepare healthy foods, and have more access to healthy food due to these mobile shops. 

Since 2018, Virtua’s Pediatric Mobile Services Unit has served 19,000 children (about the seating capacity of Madison Square Garden) and referred 2,700 for services. Its staff provides free health screenings, blood lead level testing, flu shots, back-to-school physicals, health education, and referrals to specialized services. Last year alone, the program served 4,800 children—a record number. In 2022, it saved 190 lives and prevented 1,069 emergency department visits. The program has more than 100 community partners, including schools, child-care centers, health departments, and organizations. 

Launched this summer, the Mobile Health and Cancer Screening Unit will enable Virtua to increase the number of cancer screenings it provides, from 1,000 screenings in 2022 to more than 6,000 a year going forward—including free screenings for eligible residents who are uninsured or underinsured. It expects to quadruple mammograms from 580 in 2022 to over 3,400 a year. It also provides screenings to men and women for other types of cancers.

For schedules or more information about Virtua's mobile health programs:

Innovative, Impactful Leadership
Virtua’s Culture of WE, instituted by Pullin, guides the not-for-profit health system’s people-first philosophy and fuels Virtua’s brand promise to be “Here for Good.” It is centered on understanding, respect, and the empowerment of every Virtua employee. Virtua has earned recognition as a best-in-state employer or best place to work by several third-party entities, including Forbes, the Philadelphia Business Journal, and Modern Healthcare. A May 2023 consumer study resulted in Virtua being named one of the top 50 health care brands in the country, and the second highest in the Philadelphia market.

Notable, recent accomplishments for Virtua under Pullin’s leadership include:

Pullin is also one of the driving forces behind the partnership between Virtua Health and Rowan University, which resulted in the Virtua Health College of Medicine & Life Sciences of Rowan University.

About Modern Hearlthcare
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