Lehigh Valley Health Network plans to take over a small hospital in Lehigh County for an orthopedic facility.

LVHN announced Thursday plans to acquire the assets of Westfield Hospital at 4815-25 Tilghman St. in South Whitehall Township.

Plans are for Lehigh Valley Health Network to transform Westfield into the Center for Orthpedic Medicine.

The focus at Westfield will be total joint replacement and spine surgery, but complete orthopedic care will be available, said Ron Swinfard, LVHN's president and CEO.

"The availability of Westfield Hospital provides LVHN with a unique opportunity to expand and enhance our already strong orthopedics program for the thousands of people who need those services,” Swinfard said. “This location offers convenience for our patients because of its accessibility and operational efficiencies for both inpatient and outpatient care.”

Westfield Hospital currently employs about 100 people.

According to LVHN officials, the staff has been notified of the transformation and will be given an opportunity to seek employment at the new Center for Orthopedic Medicine or at other LVHN campuses.

The new facility is expected to employ about 100 people.

Westfield currently operates 25 licensed beds, three operating rooms and an emergency department in the main hospital and three operating rooms and two procedure rooms in the Westfield Surgery Center.

LVHN officials said preliminary plans are to convert the emergency department into an urgent care facility.

Westfield Hospital CEO Dr. Yasin Khan said the hospital will continue to care for their patients until the December 2013 transaction date.

Tentative plans are to open the Center for Orthopedic Medicine in early 2014.