Pennsylvania Attorney General Shapiro sues UPMC over patient access, report

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro (WikiMedia Commons)

From The Associated Press’ Mark Scolforo:

“Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro sued Thursday in an effort to keep health giant UPMC from ending its business relationship with rival Highmark Health, in hopes of preventing higher costs from hitting about 70,000 western Pennsylvania patients.

“He asked Commonwealth Court to forestall developments expected July 1 that would leave some Highmark insurance customers facing higher fees or looking for new doctors.

“The 73-page petition to modify consent decrees seeks to enforce Pennsylvania laws about fundraising for charity, nonprofit corporations and consumer protections. It aims to modify and indefinitely extend 5-year-old consent agreements that have kept some Highmark Medicare Advantage members and others with in-network rates for UPMC services.

“’I can’t sit idly by and watch our seniors and children and workers suffer because of corporate greed,’ Shapiro, a Democrat, said in a news conference at his Pittsburgh offices.

“The attorney general’s office wants the court to impose a single, modified consent decree that would continue the business relationship between UPMC and Highmark, both based in Pittsburgh, two of Pennsylvania’s largest charitable institutions. Highmark has agreed to Shapiro’s proposed deal but UPMC has not.

“Highmark Health chief executive David Holmberg said a modified agreement would be in the community’s best interest.”

Read the full story here.

John L. Micek
John L. Micek is the Pennsylvania Capital-Star's Editor-in-Chief. He's been covering Pennsylvania politics for more than 20 years and most recently served as Opinion Editor at PennLive/The Patriot-News in Harrisburg, Pa. Micek's commentary is syndicated to more than 800 newspapers nationwide by Cagle Syndicate. And he's a regular contributor to a host of broadcast outlets in Pennsylvania and abroad.

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