Stubborn bug: It appears that Legionella bacteria have found a comfy home at the Veterans Affairs hospital in Oakland. At least that's what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suspects. A CDC report obtained by the Trib says it can trace the bacteria in a recent and fatal outbreak to the same strain that caused a fatal outbreak in 1982. If that's the case, the facility will be in for an expensive and necessary water-system retrofit.
Conflict of purpose?: You can't have your cake and eat it, too. That's the assessment of the state Insurance Department as it vets Highmark Inc.'s attempt to save West Penn Allegheny Health System as it also seeks to cut a new service contract with chief West Penn competitor UPMC. While the department (and UPMC, of course) argues that Highmark's efforts are mutually exclusive, Highmark continues to argue that they are not. The barometer is not looking good for Highmark.
Hold the phone!: Mass-transit agencies outside Allegheny County would be wise to question the Port Authority of Allegheny County's new rush to have regional transit authorities merge with it. Can you say “bailout”?
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