WPAHS, Highmark Announce Deal

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Officials with the West Penn Allegheny Health System and Highmark have formally announced a deal in which the insurer will take over the hospital network.

Top officials with both entities announced that they inked the deal on Monday. Essentially, the deal is Highmark’s acquisition of a financially troubled hospital system.

The $475 million deal to take over the six-hospital system, is a much-needed financial boost for West Penn.

However, Highmark’s entry into the healthcare provider business has angered rival UPMC, which said its facilities will no longer be available to Highmark customers in 2013.

That has brought the attention of state legislators to this issue.

On Tuesday, Highmark CEO Dr. Ken Melani stressed that residents in this area deserved to have the choice of another viable hospital system.

“At a time when our population is aging and the need for healthcare services is on the rise, we’re kind of in a critical stage here in western [Pennsylvania], facing shortages with physicians and other healthcare workers, overcrowded emergency rooms and healthcare costs that are becoming even more unaffordable. In these times, it’s vitally important to have a healthcare system that provides a choice and a healthy level of competition for people in our communities, who are seeking high quality affordable healthcare services. With that in mind, this affiliation will bring with it a unique opportunity to change the way healthcare is delivered in western Pennsylvania,” Dr. Melani said.

Highmark said it hopes to reinstate essential services at West Penn Hospital, including reopening the emergency room that was closed last January.

The acquisition still requires the approval of the Pennsylvania Insurance Department, the state attorney general, and the Internal Revenue Service.

More from Jon Delano
  • PattiT

    UPMC is like the RepubliCons–they want to CONTROL EVERYTHING!!!
    I would go without or Move out of area Before I would EVER sign up for UPMC!!

    • Dana T

      I totally agree with you. I deserve a choice in hospital and health care. I don’t want my arm twisted and forced to deal with one option of care.

    • local

      u r a idiot

  • haozijin

    Unknown message

    • local

      from a highmark employee no doubt, clueless

  • Debbra Boyd Sumner

    I think that UPMC is being money grubbing, greedy little pigs! It is the public who is being punished by there greed! Shame on UPMC.

    • local

      me thinks you have no clue, just ask someone about the cost of a highmark policy

  • sue

    upmc suxs

    • local

      me thinks you do

  • ?????

    Dearest local,

    me thinks you are either a UPMC employee, a troll or both

  • 2059

    Hey Seniors read your Highmark 2012 Medicare summary of benifits CLOSELY and see that Highmark made some very big changes, that don’t favor you. I’m changing to UPMC because it leaves more money in MY POCKET. Some body has to pay for the Hospital purchase, and it won’t be Highmark!

  • larry

    Attention Pittsburgh residents:
    If you or a loved one are affected by the ongoing UPMC & Highmark dispute and you want to contact the UPMC Board of Directors, here are their work numbers:

    Esther Barazzone, PhD     412-365-1100 Arthur S. Levine, MD 412-648-8975
    G. Nicholas Beckwith III 412-373-4763 Robert G. Lovett 412-392-2220
    Esther L. Bush                412-227-4802 W. Duff McCrady 412-391-6464
    Mary Jo Dively   412-268-3662 Martin G. McGuinn 412-234-4966
    Alan R. Guttman  724-483-3533 Marlee S. Myers 412-560-3300
    Richard S. Hamilton  412-363-5100 Mark A. Nordenberg 412-624-4200
    Howard W. Hanna III   412-967-9000 Robert A. Paul 412-456-4400
    Robert M. Hernandez   412-893-0026 John Pelusi Jr. 412-281-8714 xt 2030
    Margaret P. Joy  412-471-9900 Patricia L. Siger 412-227-3800
    B.  Scott Kern    814-452-2281 Neil Y. Van Horn 412-447-4560
    Mark J. Laskow  412-361-0100

  • lucky chucky

    AT LAST! MR.JEFFREY ROMOFF has revealed his “case” against Highmark. It is not about patient care but MONEY!
    Here is a direct quote from the total trib media inc, September 23rd edition, bottom left of page B10… UPMC IS PUTTING SOME OF ITS 9 BILLION IN REVENUE AT RISK IF HIGHMARK’S MORE THAN 3 MILLION MEMBERS IN WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA NO LONGER HAVE ACESS TO UPMC. Well that says a lot about NON-PROFIT Health Care, doesn’t it! Hopefully UPMC has not put money in all the politician’s pocket’s and then turn around and take it from you! WAKE UP GOV CORBETT!

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