Hospital consumer prices increased 0.4% last month following the 0.8% gain in February, newly released figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show. By comparison, the March rise in hospital consumer prices a year ago was 0.3%, the agency's Consumer Price Index
shows. Outpatient hospital consumer prices increased last month slightly faster, at 0.4%, than the 0.3% gain for inpatient prices.
For the year that ended last Month, hospital consumer prices increased 5.6% compared with 5.2% for the year-ago period.
Physician service consumer prices climbed 0.2% in March after no change in February. Last month's increase was identical to the 0.2% gain for the same month a year ago. For the 12 months that ended in March, physician service consumer prices increased 2.5%, up from 1.3% the prior year. Follow Melanie Evans on Twitter: @MHmevans