Pittsburgh Ranks in Top 10 for the Best Healthcare

By Kim Shindle | April 20, 2020 | 3 min. read

Pittsburgh was the only Pennsylvania city to make the Apartment Guide’s list of top 50 cities for the best healthcare, coming in at number 6.

Apartment Guide evaluated 100 of the largest cities in the U.S. and ranked them based on number of hospitals, medical centers, clinics, physicians and surgeons per capita in each city. They also analyzed the average cost of healthcare in each area to determine the best cities for healthcare.

Brian Carberry, managing editor of Apartment Guide, said they do several surveys a year, ranking cities in various categories. The healthcare survey was planned, but the data isn’t related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Pittsburgh is a city that does well in many of our surveys,” Carberry said. “The cost of living is reasonable there; it has the right number of businesses and the right population. It has a lot of things going for it as revitalization efforts are going on throughout the city.”

Pittsburgh has the second-most hospitals and second-most doctors per capita of any in the nation, with 11.9 hospitals per capita (100,000 people) and 2,014.5 physicians per capita. The Pennsylvania city also offers the least expensive average prescription medicine price of Apartment Guide’s top 10 and the second cheapest in the entire country.

PAR District 9 Vice President David Dean said, “As a beneficiary of Allegheny Health Network care as I battled COVID-19, Pittsburgh has two of the top 15 Best Hospital Networks because both insurance giants UPMC and Highmark (Blue Cross/Blue Shield) are pioneers in so many advances in medicine, public health policy and addressing medical disparities. Pittsburgh used to be the steel city or smoky city… after emerging from the collapse of steel, Pittsburgh became one of the top medical research and treatment centers of the world. It’s the symbiotic relationship between two medical – insurance pioneers who collaborate and compete with the best interest of Pittsburgh’s communities and the welfare of all.”

Pittsburgh is a city of firsts, according to Apartment Guide. The city is home to America’s first hospital west of the Atlantic coast, its first military hospital and the nation’s first Mercy hospital. Doctors in Pittsburgh shepherded modern brain surgery, heart-lung transplants for cystic fibrosis patients, pediatric liver, heart, lung, kidney and limb transplants and robotic arm replacement technology. The late Dr. Thomas Starzl, nicknamed the “Father of Modern Transplantation,” was responsible for guiding advances in this area. And the University of Pittsburgh has the distinction of being home to Dr. Jonas Salk, who developed the polio vaccine in the 1950s.

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, which has appeared on the U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Hospitals Honor Roll” every year this millennium, is the busiest transplant center in the world. The Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh also ranks as one of the 10 best facilities in the country for pediatric medicine.

Orlando ranked number one and was one of three cities from Florida to make the top 10. Carberry said the cities in Florida ranking high on the list may be due to the older population and the higher need for healthcare.

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