Pottstown Hospital’s Tower Health Receives Massive Credit Downgrade from Fitch Ratings

Image via Pottstown Hospital FaceBook page.

Tower Health, which owns Montgomery County’s Pottstown Hospital, received a three-tier credit downgrade from Fitch Ratings on Monday, writes Harold Brubaker for The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The credit rating agency cited the nonprofit’s average monthly losses of $14 million as the reason for its massive downgrade and warned that future multi-notch downgrades could follow if Tower is not able to alter its financial trajectory.

The health system’s new rating is B+, which takes Tower deeper into junk-bond territory. Fitch previously slashed Tower’s rating in October from a solid BBB to BB+, but at the time it expected “that Tower would return to a stable operational position and gradually improve its balance sheet.”

But instead of improving, Tower lost an additional $111 million in the last three months of 2020 and ended the year with significantly less cash on hand than it had in September to run its hospitals and operations.

According to Fitch, Tower’s financial situation is weak even with its newly downgraded rating.

In the hopes of improving this financial situation, Tower’s board decided last week to look for a “partner” for the entire health system, leaving the door open for acquisition.

Read more about Tower Health at The Philadelphia Inquirer by clicking here.