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Penn State Health and Berks Cardiologists sign letter of intent for practice to join health system

Penn State Health and Berks Cardiologists, Ltd. announced today they have reached agreement for the cardiology practice to join Penn State Health Medical Group. Together, they will continue a tradition of providing exceptional cardiology services to Berks and Schuylkill County residents. Following a vote by the Penn State Health Board of Directors this week (May 2) to approve terms of the agreement, Berks Cardiologists is set to become part of the Medical Group this summer.

Affiliation with Penn State Health will allow practice physicians to offer local residents enhanced access to complete, specialized cardiac care close to home, including Penn State Heart and Vascular Institute, which offers the region's only heart transplant center. Penn State Health will collaborate with Berks Cardiologists to continue to provide the outstanding cardiology services its patients have come to expect, and provide support for the clinical trials offered through the practice.

“We have a long history of providing innovative and quality cardiovascular care in this region,” said Dr. Louis Borgatta, cardiologist at Berks Cardiologists. “We look forward to gaining the advantages of being part of a health system that is anchored by a university-based teaching and research hospital, as we believe it will only enhance our ability to remain at the forefront of cardiovascular care in this region of Pennsylvania.”

Berks Cardiologists has been a leader in cardiac and vascular care in Berks and Schuylkill counties for more than 45 years. Its mission is to provide the most comprehensive, up-to-date care in the most compassionate and caring fashion. Its providers are known for state-of-the-art care, high-quality diagnostic imaging and participation in cutting-edge clinical research. Berks Cardiologists has earned national accreditation as a nuclear cardiology laboratory, a vascular laboratory and an echocardiography laboratory.

Berks Cardiologists has consistently been on the forefront of integrating innovative technology into diagnosing and treating patients. They were the first in the Berks region to offer cardiac resynchronization therapy, transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) as well as the Watchman implant. Berks Cardiologists has been the only private practice cardiology group in Pennsylvania with cardiac PET.

“We are thrilled that the providers of Berks Cardiologists decided to pair their stellar reputation for providing innovative cardiovascular care to the community with Penn State Health's commitment to ensuring those we serve have access to specialized care and clinical trial options as close to home as possible,” said Dr. Bill Bird, senior vice president for Penn State Health Medical Group. “They will be a welcome and valued addition to the Penn State Health Medical Group team.”

This affiliation strengthens a relationship Penn State Health St. Joseph and Berks Cardiologists have shared for years. All physicians affiliated with Berks Cardiologists are also staff cardiologists at Penn State Health St. Joseph Medical Center.

“We're excited to build on the longstanding relationship among Berks Cardiologists and St. Joseph's,” said Dr. Christopher Newman, chief medical officer and vice president of medical affairs at Penn State Health St. Joseph. “By working together, we can build on our success in providing the exceptional cardiac services our community has come to expect from us.”

The agreement between the two organizations—which could take effect as early as August 1— means that the 112 Berks Cardiologists employees, including 14 physicians, will become Penn State Health employees.

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