Merger Would Help Patients on Margin
Einstein Healthcare Network and Jefferson Health received notice last month that the Federal Trade Commission and the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office are challenging a proposed merger of the two networks. The chief executives from both organizations - Stephen K. Klasko, MD, president of Thomas Jefferson University and CEO of Jefferson Health and Barry R. Freedman, president and CEO of Einstein Healthcare Network - defended the merger in an opinion article in today's Philadelphia Inquirer.
In the article, they discuss the landscape for healthcare in Philadelphia, including the recent closing of Hahnemann University Hospital and Mercy Hospital, and the loss of access to care and jobs they represent.
"Jefferson and Einstein, coming together as two mission-driven, non-profit, safety-net hospitals with strong Philadelphia roots, see our merger as an opportunity to improve patient access to care in vulnerable areas of the city, " they wrote.
Klasko and Freeman explain why they disagree with the findings of the two government agencies that the merger would reduce competition. "By focusing solely on patients with commercial insurance," they argue, "the FTC and AG failed to appreciate the importance of this transaction to maintaining access to high-quality health care for Philadelphia area residents."
And they stress the importance of protecting the most vulnerable in our region.
"In a city and region that prides itself on our medical and educational assets, we are becoming a tale of two healthcare cities for those at the margin. We are at a crucial point and we need to support voiceless members of our community who depend on a vibrant Einstein for their health and well-being."
Read the article
Read statements from Einstein and two local elected officials