UPMC Brings a New Era of Patient Care for Altoona

Updated on June 28, 2013
Jerry Murray, UPMC Altoona
Jerry Murray

A new era of patient care begins today in our region with the official establishment of UPMC Altoona.

UPMC (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center) has made a capital commitment of $250 million over 10 years to enhance health care facilities and services for patients, and to bring outstanding technology, science, innovation and expertise to the region.

As UPMC’s sole regional referral center and tertiary hub, UPMC Altoona will offer more specialized medicine and advanced treatments.

“This means our patients can receive an even higher level of care in our region for years to come,” said Jerry Murray, president of UPMC Altoona. “And they will receive this care from the very same physicians and caregivers they have come to know and trust.”

UPMC is a world-class academic medical center and is consistently ranked in the prestigious U.S. News & World Report annual Honor Roll of America’s Best Hospitals.

Elizabeth B. Concordia, UPMC executive vice president and president, Hospital and Community Services Division, said UPMC and Altoona Regional have always had a “mutually beneficial relationship.”

“It has been a relationship that has always enhanced patient care for our communities,” she said. “Now we are pleased to begin our formal affiliation and shared vision to strengthen UPMC Altoona as the premier provider of health care throughout the Blair County region well into the future and to further UPMC’s commitment to extend its world-class care to this area.”

A newly formed board will oversee UPMC Altoona’s strategic direction. Two-thirds of the new board was appointed by the former Altoona Regional board. (Successors will be appointed by a majority of these directors.) One-third was appointed by UPMC.

On June 20, the boards of directors of Altoona Regional Health System and parent company Central Pennsylvania Health Services Corporation took their final action in the affiliation process, voting unanimously to join the UPMC system.

This was the end of an almost two-year process of assessing the future of health care for this region and determining the benefits of alliances with smaller, similar-sized, and larger systems. At the end of this comprehensive analysis, all agreed that UPMC offered the best opportunities for the health care system, its employees, and its community.

UPMC has made an additional commitment of $10 million to the hospital’s foundation; has assumed responsibility for all of Altoona Regional Health System’s outstanding debt, and will ensure satisfaction of other liabilities, including all pension liabilities.

“We promise that through this world-class partnership, the communities served by UPMC Altoona will benefit from cost-effective health care of the highest quality, job opportunities and even greater civic responsibility,” Murray said.

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