Technological innovations in the energy sector have increased demand for semiskilled labor in southwestern Pennsylvania. How can postsecondary educational and training programs adapt to the evolving skills demand?
Energy-sector employers in West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania report having difficulty filling semiskilled jobs. And the sector's technology is changing quickly. How can the region's leaders improve the workforce-development pipeline?
Although Pennsylvania ranks high among U.S. states in average student performance, the achievement gaps between students classified by race-ethnicity, economic status, and parent education are among the widest nationally. Race-ethnic academic achievement gaps amount to an estimated annual cost of $1 billion to $3 billion in lost earnings.
As demonstrated in Pennsylvania, conveners of medical home pilots are drawing from their early experiences to refine their intervention designs and improve their effectiveness. Such a learning process is likely to be a critical part of successfully implementing any new model of payment and care delivery.
A medical home intervention that paid bonuses to physician practices based on financial savings showed significant improvements in quality and use of some medical services relative to comparison practices.
The Pittsburgh region faces major challenges to stormwater management. These challenges could grow with climate change, complicating the investment decisions that need to be made for new or replacement infrastructure. The pilot study aims to take a first step toward improved stormwater and climate resilience planning at the county and city levels.
State mental health authorities routinely devote resources to collect data for state planning and reporting purposes. However, these data are rarely used in cross-state comparisons to inform state or federal policy development.
Pennsylvania is within the U.S. region that has the highest incidence of reported Legionnaires' disease. Guidelines for community hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living, and high-rise retirement facilities provide information on Legionella and how to minimize its occurrence and impact on people and the environment.
Development of natural gas resources has progressed rapidly in Pennsylvania. These activities require many heavy truck trips for equipment and materials, which can damage state and local roads not designed for high volumes of heavy truck traffic.
Natural gas production is growing and many states and communities are reaping the economic benefits. One of the costs, however, will be damage to roads. One hydraulic fracturing operation requires about 600 to 1,100 one-way, heavy truck trips to bring equipment, materials, and sometimes water to and from a well site.
While the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act will require additional spending by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, these costs will be more than offset by additional revenue or reductions in other spending in the 2014-2020 timeframe.
The medical home has gained national attention as a model to reorganize primary care to improve health outcomes. Pennsylvania has undertaken one of the largest state-based, multipayer medical home pilot projects.
If Pennsylvania opts into Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, more residents would have health coverage and the state would enjoy a positive economic effect. However, benefits would have a long-term cost, with uneven regional results.
Further study, including primary data collection in regions where extraction is occurring, will be important to track the magnitude of emissions and to ensure that Pennsylvania's permit requirements are adequate to protect human health and the environment, writes Aimee Curtright.