Hospital rate increase wins approval in Maryland
Maryland regulators have approved a 4.5% increase in the prices hospitals can charge their patients. Maryland hospital executives said, however, that while the rate increase should help curb recent drops in hospitals' profits, the rising costs of labor, supplies and energy combined with the nationwide credit crunch will still hit the institutions' bottom lines. The hospitals could begin charging patients and insurers more for health services by July 1, 2008.
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