Framing the Dialogue

Posts Tagged ‘upmc’

Free Market For Me

king kongAlmost two years ago I wrote a post about a battle between two behemoths in Pennsylvania.  Highmark is the largest health insurance provider in Pennsylvania and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) is one of the largest health care providers in the state and certainly the largest in the western part of the state.  A summary of the battle is that UPMC started offering their own health insurance years ago so they got into the insurance business.  A few years ago Highmark started to purchase some failing hospital in the Pittsburgh area.  These hospitals were competition for UPMC.  UMPC decided that it would, after an existing agreement expired, no longer accept Highmark health insurance at its facilities.  I think that I mentioned that Highmark is the largest insurance provider and that UMPC is pretty much the only game in town in the western part of the state.

The Elephants Duel

When elephants duel the only ones who really get hurt are those poor souls unlucky enough to be between them.  Locally we have a somewhat nasty fuel between two health care behemoths.  The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (“UPMC) has not so quietly been gobbling up hospital after hospital after hospital.  They have built an impressive array of first-class medical facilities and propelled the Pittsburgh Region to the forefront of quality health care centers.  Highmark is is behemoth 2 and has been the local service for Blue Cross/Blue Shield and one of the larger insurance providers in the area.  UPMC go irked recently when Highmark took steps to purchase UPMC’s largest (actually quite smaller) competitor, West Penn Allegheny who have severe financial problems.

Create-A-Right

There is a local story about the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (“UPMC”) who own most of the hospitals in the surrounding area.  They do not own all of the facilities, but they are getting there.  Even though they are a non profit organization,

You can always tell a true "grassroots" protest by the large crowds holding hand lettered signs.

they are still a business and have to make some unpopular decisions.  A few months ago UPMC announced that it was closing one of its hospitals that did not have enough patients to make it viable.