Tower Health, Independence Blue Cross reach agreement

New contract keeps 6 hospitals in IBX's network

WEST READING, Pa. - Some 120,000 Independence Blue Cross customers can continue to receive in-network health care at Tower Health's six hospitals in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Independence Blue Cross and Tower Health announced Friday that they have come to terms on a new, three-year contract, which keeps Brandywine, Chestnut Hill, Jennersville, Phoenixville, Pottstown, and Reading hospitals in the Independence network.

"Providing patients, members, and communities continued access to quality, affordable care in this region is paramount for both organizations; and resolving these discussions quickly was in the best interest of members and patients," Clint Matthews, Tower Health's president and CEO, and Dr. Anthony V. Coletta, president of Independence Blue Cross Facilitated Health Networks, said in a joint statement.

Independence and Tower Health had been at an impasse in their negotiations as a result of the former Reading Health System adding the five hospitals to its system and becoming Tower Health. The acquisition became official last Sunday.

From that time, Independence Blue Cross customers would have had a 30-day grace period to visit one of the six hospitals as an in-network provider.

"We are confident that this agreement will serve as the foundation for a strong relationship between our two organizations," Matthews and Coletta said.

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