The Senate Banking and Insurance Committee has scheduled a hearing for September 13 to determine if it has any regulatory authority over a dispute between two western Pennsylvania health care giants, UPMC and Highmark.
The two have been battling over a service reimbursement contract that is set to expire on June 30, 2012. UPMC is also at odds with Highmark’s plan to invest in a UPMC competitor, West Penn Allegheny Health System, according to a Senate Republican Caucus staffer.
“Not sure how much say we’ll have over the contract dispute,” the staffer said. “But we might have some regulatory say over the plans to invest in West Penn.”
Chairman of the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee, Don White, R-Indiana said that the hearing would be the first in a series.
"The disagreement between Highmark and UPMC, if left unresolved, could have a major impact on the region on several levels,” White said.
Among others, State Insurance Commissioner Michael Consedine will be testifying at the hearing