WEST READING, Pa. - Berks-based Tower Health is pursuing a new partnership as it looks to bounce back from falling revenue and lowered bond ratings.
The health care system announced Friday it plans to pursue a "strategic alliance" with Penn Medicine, to work together to develop programs and initiatives in each independent organization.
Tower Health's board of directors signed a letter of intent to begin the process of developing an alignment model, according to a news release.
A committee with equal representation from Tower Health and Penn Medicine will evaluate over the next 6 months potential areas of collaboration, Tower Health said. It does not plan to release additional details until after that process.
The board says the decision follows a months-long process to consider options for a path forward, as Tower Health was in financial trouble and there were ongoing questions about its future.
“Among our criteria for considering a strategic alliance as one possible path forward, the Board wanted to find a compatible health system that shares our patient-focused values and represents an opportunity to not only stabilize, but strengthen the care we deliver,” said Tom Work, chair of Tower Health’s Board of Directors, in the news release.
Tower Health also said it has had a positive financial turnaround since March, as operational improvements have taken hold and patient volumes are back to pre-pandemic levels.
The board emphasized that the alliance is not a merger, and both Tower Health and Penn Medicine will remain independent.
P. Sue Perrotty, the President and CEO of Tower Health, said "this marks just the beginning of the next chapter of Tower Health as we remain steadfast in implementing our ongoing turnaround initiatives."
Kevin B. Mahoney, the Penn Medicine CEO, said "both Penn Medicine and Tower are committed to providing the very best care for patients in the regions we serve together." and "with this shared goal as our chief mission, forming a stronger alliance would allow us to work together to develop new approaches for delivering superior, cost effective and accessible patient care in our local communities."
A Penn spokesperson sent WFMZ a statement saying that they look forward to working with Tower Health in the coming months to evaluate potential areas of opportunity.