Doctors Hospital of Sarasota (Fla.), which delivers about 800 babies a year, said it will get out of the baby business by Dec. 1 because of mounting medical malpractice insurance costs. The hospital will deliver babies with due dates of up until Nov. 15. So far this year, 147-bed Doctors Hospital has paid $1.62 million in malpractice premiums, a 32% increase from 2001; about $500,000 of the premiums were for the obstetrics unit. The department generates more than $5 million in revenue a year but records a $500,000 deficit because of equipment costs and declining reimbursement, a spokeswoman said. Closing the department will save the hospital about $1 million annually, the hospital said. -- by Patrick Reilly
Fla. hospital to end obstetrics, cites insurance
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