UPMC's two faces

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In my three years of living in southwestern Pennsylvania, I have been astounded by the size and diversity of an organization that includes both "university" and "medical" in its title yet extends its vast domain over other areas having little, if anything, to do with its name.

It is also striking to see how fine its medical component is while its extremely well-paid CEO, Jeffrey Romoff, and management invent twisted and tortured legal, but doubtfully ethical, subterfuges to evade paying taxes and shroud UPMC in the cloak of being a charity.

Furthermore, it plans to reject patients who happen to have Highmark insurance -- and so is engaged in a nasty and pricey public battle. On one hand a most admirable corporation and on the other hand, one that displays despicable behavior toward the community of which it is so large a part. A fascinating dichotomy.


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