Hospital Consolidations
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The State Attorney Generals office is performing an audit into the hospital consolidations. He is making stops across the state for hearings, including one in Altoona Wednesday. He discussed a lot at that hearing today. There were two hours worth of testimony from local healthcare leaders. He says he wants to make sure with consolidations to bigger companies like UPMC, access, and quality are both protected for patients in rural towns, especially were people only have one hospital to choose. He says the purpose of this hearing from local healthcare leaders was to find out what issues come with the switch from small community hospitals to bigger companies like UPMC. He says small community hospitals have been struggling, so rural areas like this do benefit from having a larger company with more resources come in he just wants to make sure that patients and the private practices and pharmacies are not being squashed in that process. "I'm very concerned about local pharmacies and local doctors being pushed out of the network. They have a lot of history with constituents in this area. I am concerned that they did not have a chance to have a fair fight to try to get into the networks."