Recently we went to a town hall meeting to discuss UPMC Altoona not wanting to honor other insurance except UPMC insurance after 2014.
Well, we heard from our elected officials that there is nothing that they can do about what UPMC Altoona is going to do, and that the only way anything can be done is if everyone sent letters to Harrisburg and protested UPMC Altoona's plans.
I've lived here in Altoona since 1975, and I have never heard of such a thing.
My wife had two children at the Altoona Hospital. I have had services done for me there as have my wife and children when the need has come up.
This is our hospital, not just UPMC's hospital. It has always been there for everyone - young and old, for whatever reason, who needed to go to the hospital.
Let's suppose one is in an accident but they don't have UPMC coverage. That person will be charged more because he or she doesn't have that coverage. And the ambulance is going to have to take an injured person to the nearest hospital, which happens to be UPMC Altoona, now the only one in town.
The state representatives who came down from the our state capital said in the meeting that their hands were tied.
How can anyone believe our own elected officials, when they stand before everyone and say there is nothing they can do until everyone gets on board and protests?
It seems as though they already know the outcome because there is only a small window where something may be done. I took it as though they don't care one way or the other.
It seems to me they are waiting for another election to come so other elected state representatives get elected, and they don't have to deal with this problem of ours here in Altoona.
By then, this whole mess won't be the way that things used to be - a hospital that belonged to everyone, not just the folks that are insured by UPMC.
Raul B. Garcia