Construction around UPMC Mercy Hospital. (Photo by Terry Clark/PublicSource)

How fast has UPMC grown? The answer in four charts

This month, UPMC filed its annual disclosures to the IRS, reporting gross receipts approaching $20 billion, as of June 30, 2019. UPMC's receipts — which reflect all money earned, without subtracting expenses — are roughly the size of the entire economy of Afghanistan, nearly 33 times the 2020 budget of the City of Pittsburgh, and 35% more than it reported just three years before.

Baxter Parklet.

Pittsburgh’s parks tax that prioritized equity likely won’t be collected this year, despite equity protests and a rise in park use

The political context of the parks tax has changed considerably since March. The original debate over the tax centered around what it meant to spend the money equitably. Since then, Black Lives Matter protests across Pittsburgh have put the issue of equity front-and-center, drawing attention — and often support —  from council.

(Illustration by ah_designs/iStockphoto.com)

Allegheny County hoped the tide had turned on the opioid epidemic. Early data suggests it may be surging again

The number of Allegheny County residents dying of opioid overdoses is rising again, after a drop of 40% in 2018 had many health experts hoping the tide of the epidemic had turned. The most recent data shows that the county had a 15% increase in overdose deaths in 2019. The 564 overdose deaths in 2019 were the third highest yearly total, according to data from Overdose Free PA. In 2016 and 2017, there were 650 and 737 total overdose deaths respectively. And the epidemic may only be getting worse in 2020, according to overdose data provided by the city of Pittsburgh, the county health department and the nonprofit Prevention Point Pittsburgh. 

During the first five months of 2020 Allegheny County recorded a 28% increase in the total number of times emergency responders administered naloxone for an overdose compared to the first five months of 2019. 
Pittsburgh recorded a 50% increase in overdose calls during that same time period.