UPMC

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA


Pittsburgh is home to dozens of hospitals and medical facilities, from Level I trauma centers to neighborhood health clinics. Nearly one out of every five workers in the city is employed in health care. 

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UPMC is telling its employees that they do not need to quarantine for 14 days after out-of-state travel. 

 

This guidance differs from the quarantine recommendation that the Allegheny County Health Department made on Sunday, after a week of particularly high case counts. But on Wednesday, the county itself has taken steps to clarify some of its recommendations – and health department director Dr. Debra Bogen called UPMC’s guidance a “clear and thoughtful” interpretation of county policy.

 

KEITH SRAKOCIC / AP

Allegheny County continued its upswing of novel coronavirus infections, with another 45 cases reported on Wednesday. This follows Monday's count of 45 cases, which was the highest daily total in more than a month.

But UPMC, the state’s largest medical system, says it’s important to take a broader look at how the pandemic is progressing.

Jessica Kourkounis / AP

When faced with a new medical diagnosis, it can be difficult for some people to retain important information about managing symptoms, treatment options and prescription regimens. 

UPMC

Pennsylvania's largest medical system said Thursday that its inpatient volume has nearly returned to pre-pandemic levels. Though certain areas of care at UPMC, like cancer treatment, are still not back to normal.  

Keith Srakocic / AP

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center got nearly twice the federal stimulus aid of its closest competitors, new numbers show, despite the fact that many of its hospitals are in parts of the state that were not among the hardest hit by the coronavirus.

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Allegheny County is set to move into the yellow phase of Gov. Tom Wolf’s reopening plan on Friday. In its plan to restart the economy amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, the Wolf administration said that in order for an area to reopen, there must be sufficient capacity for both testing and case investigation, including contact tracing.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

UPMC says it plans to start increasing the number of non-emergency procedures it performs.

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Plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients may provide a desperately needed treatment for people currently fighting the disease.

John Minchillo / AP

On today's program: Pittsburgh scientists apply nimble rules to the coronavirus treatment testing process; how some PA manufacturers are adapting to make protective equipment, with and without government approval; Meals on Wheels continues with new best practices during the pandemic; and an update on the long-awaited Mon-Oakland Connector plan.

There is no shortage of potential treatments for the coronavirus—the real shortage is the time to figure out which ones work best. But UPMC says it plans to use artificial intelligence to accelerate the timetable for winnowing out approaches that don’t work. And among the first drugs to be tested will be anti-malarial medication hydroxychloroquine, which President Donald Trump has touted in press conferences. 

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

UPMC said Friday it’s ramping up telehealth efforts to meet the demands of patients seeking care amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, reporting that last week it provided more remote visits than it did during the entirety of 2019.

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On today's program: How one homeless shelter is coping during the pandemic; why UPMC says elective procedures should proceed, even as resources remain tight; and farmers are declared life-sustaining, but it’s unclear where they can sell their food.

GENE J. PUSKAR / AP

Despite directives from state and county health officials, elective surgeries are still being performed at UPMC facilities. 

Medical professionals employed by UPMC, speaking to WESA on condition of anonymity, said this decision may have dire consequences in light of COVID-19’s exponential spread.

While less time sensitive, elective surgeries are often medically necessary; examples include kidney stone removal, hernia repair and shoulder arthroscopy.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

UPMC and Allegheny County are being sued after the hospital system allegedly performed urine testing on a woman and her newborn — without the woman’s consent — and then turned over the results to county officials for investigation.

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Due to the ongoing spread of coronavirus, UPMC is asking people not to visit the health network’s long-term care or skilled-nursing facilities if they are ill or have cold symptoms, even if these symptoms are relatively minor.

Sarah Boden / 90.5 WESA News

The two dominant health insurers in western Pennsylvania are picking up the bill for COVID-19 testing, when recommended by a medical professional.

Though it's possible that coronavirus is circulating undetected in western Pennsylvania, the region’s largest health care system said on Tuesday that it hasn’t needed to test any patients at any of its facilities for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.

Terry Chea / AP

As concerns of a global pandemic amplify, some Pittsburgh institutions are taking precautions against the new coronavirus by restricting travel to China.

UPMC Hopes To Found Its Own Pharmaceutical Company

Jan 30, 2020
Keith Srakocic / AP

UPMC’s pledge to spend $1 billion on life science innovations over four years is expected to support early stage development of medical devices, software, drugs and more nationwide. On Wednesday, executive vice president Jeanne Cunicelli said that investment will also be the catalyst for a new venture at UPMC: a for-profit pharmaceutical company.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

The Pittsburgh region will be buzzing with economic activity this year, especially for some of its biggest employers.  This year is poised to be one of growth for the economic power houses of UPMC and Highmark. After years of legal wrangling, the two entities worked out a deal last year giving most Highmark customers in network access to UPMC doctors and hospitals for 10 years.

Sarah Boden / 90.5 WESA

Sammia Eutsey’s son, Chadd Jr., was born 10 weeks early, due in part to her pre-eclampsia, a condition related to high blood pressure.

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UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh says a dozen people — including six babies — are being treated for the antibiotic-resistant staph infection known as MRSA.

Sarah Boden / 90.5 WESA

Western Pennsylvanians breathed a sigh of relief earlier this week when it was announced that UPMC and Highmark had reached a 10-year agreement, though not everyone insured by Highmark will have access to all UPMC medical facilities.

Both photos by Gene J. Puskar/AP

Most UPMC patients with Highmark insurance will lose in-network access to the medical system's doctors and facilities at the end of this month, a Commonwealth Court judge ruled on Friday. 

UPMC Hearing Gives Glimpse Into Bitter Highmark Feud

Jun 12, 2019
Marc Levy / AP

Two days, three witnesses and hundreds of pages of exhibits all boil down to one question: Did UPMC agree to a clause that would give the state a chance to extend its 2014 agreement with UPMC and Highmark?

At stake is whether people with Highmark insurance will still be able to access UPMC care after that agreement's June 30 expiration date, or whether they'll face exorbitant out-of-network rates.

Both photos by Gene J. Puskar/AP

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro wants a judge to require UPMC to keep accepting Highmark health insurance under a deal set to expire this month.

UPMC announced Thursday that the Hillman Cancer Center would accept all insurers, including Highmark commercial and Medicare Advantage plans. 

Marcus Charleston / 90.5 WESA

University Pittsburgh Medical Center is dropping plans to seek prepayment from out-of-network Highmark Medicare Advantage patients when consent decrees linking the competing health care giants end on June 30. 

Carolyn Kaster / AP

A Pennsylvania judge plans to rule in a couple weeks about whether and how a five-year consent decree that's about to expire between two mammoth health care providers and the attorney general's office can be modified.

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