Reading Health System to buy five hospitals, change name to Tower Health

Wendy Solomon//May 31, 2017

Reading Health System to buy five hospitals, change name to Tower Health

Wendy Solomon//May 31, 2017

Reading Health will buy the hospitals from struggling, for-profit Community Health Systems, based in Franklin, Tenn., Reading Health announced Tuesday.

CHS is the former owner of Easton Hospital, which was sold to Steward Health Care LLC in May.

The deal is expected to close this summer, according to a news release. The purchase price was not disclosed.

The new system will be known as Tower Health.

Reading Health, headquartered in West Reading, will acquire Pottstown Memorial Medical Center in Pottstown, Montgomery County; three hospitals in Chester County: Brandywine Hospital in Coatesville, Phoenixville Hospital in Phoenixville and Jennersville Regional Hospital in West Grove; and Chestnut Hill Hospital in Philadelphia.

Reading Health operates the 714-bed Reading Hospital, which would be the largest of the six hospitals.

Reading Health employs more than 1,000 physicians and providers across 46 locations in Berks and surrounding counties.

Once the acquisition is complete, it will add several thousand more employees who will be offered jobs if they are in good standing, according to hospital officials.

Health insurance will be offered through Reading Health’s provider-payer joint venture, Reading Health-UPMC Health Plan.

“Creating a regional network of hospitals and providers makes sense in the current environment and positions us well for the future,” Rich Newell, CEO of Pottstown Memorial, said in a statement. “We are committed to providing our patients with the highest quality care and this will continue as we join with Reading Health System.”

Pottstown is a 232-bed acute care hospital. The medical staff includes 260 physicians in 40 medical specialties.

“Reading Health has a rich, 150-year history of providing high-quality, cost-effective health care to the communities we serve,” Clint Matthews, president and CEO of Reading Health, said in a statement.

“The proposed acquisition will ensure the continued development of acute care and related assets and provider network capabilities to best serve our region in a cost-effective manner. …

“Also by expanding the scope of our clinical programming through this acquisition, the new system will maximize opportunities to leverage best practices of each organization and further coordinate our system-wide brand of high-quality care across the entire system.”