ChristianaCare, Delaware’s largest health system, has agreed to buy Tower Health’s Jennersville Hospital, which has been closed since Dec. 31, the Wilmington nonprofit said Wednesday. The price was not disclosed.
The sale, expected to be completed in 30 to 60 days, includes the 52-bed hospital on 12 acres in Penn Township, Chester County; Tower’s interests in two affiliated medical office buildings; and an additional 24-acre parcel of land behind the hospital.
Tower is also trying to sell the shuttered Brandywine Hospital near Coatesville, Chestnut Hill Hospital in Philadelphia, and a collection of urgent-care centers as it tries to recover from a money-losing expansion binge that lasted from 2017 to 2019.
ChristianaCare, which in March acquired two Tower primary-care medical practices at Jennersville and West Grove, is still negotiating an even bigger move into Pennsylvania through the potential acquisition of Prospect Medical Holdings Inc.’s Crozer Health in Delaware County. ChristianaCare said in February, when it announced a preliminary deal for Crozer, that a final agreement was expected by this month.
Planning for the services that ChristianaCare will offer at Jennersville, to be called ChristianaCare West Grove Campus, is in the early stages.
“We know that the loss of the emergency services because of the closing of Jennersville Hospital is a significant concern of the community, and that’s definitely something that we’re discussing,” Jennifer Schwartz, ChristianaCare’s chief strategy officer, said in a news release.
The loss of the emergency department services was of particular concern to residents of the nearby Jenner’s Pond retirement community. The closure forced emergency services in southwestern Chester County to cover each other’s territories because ambulances now have much farther to travel to hospitals in Lancaster, Newark, or West Chester.
ChristianaCare now has three hospitals: Christiana Hospital, a 906-bed, 1.3 million-square-foot hospital in Newark; Wilmington Hospital, a 321-bed, facility in Wilmington; and Union Hospital, a 72-bed acute care facility in Elkton, Md. The system employs more than 13,000 people.
This is the second deal that Tower has reached on the sale of Jennersville Hospital. A Texas company, Canyon Atlantic Partners, agreed in November to pay $12 million for Jennersville and Brandywine, but that deal fell through when Canyon Atlantic failed to come up with the money. The agreement called for Canyon to pay Tower an additional $4.5 million based on the hospitals’ future profitability.
Negotiations over the future of St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in North Philadelphia represent another front in Tower’s bid to right itself financially. Tower acquired St. Chris out of the same bankruptcy in 2019 that involved Hahnemann Hospital, in a 50-50 joint venture with Drexel University. Tower and Drexel are trying to pull in additional owners and supporters to help shoulder losses at the safety-net provider, with the goal of reaching a deal by the end of this month.
Tower on Wednesday did not provide an immediate response on the status of those talks.
St. Chris had a $10.6 million operating loss on $207.4 million in revenue in the nine months ended March 31. Overall, Tower lost $137.3 million on $1.7 billion in revenue during that period.