Hospital employment grew by 7,900 positions in November, helping make healthcare and social assistance one of the fastest-growing industry segments of the year, according to seasonally adjusted figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Total hospital employment reached 4.35 million, up from 4.34 million in October, the bureau said. Since November 2003, hospitals added 67,600 employees. Employment at physicians' offices also rose last month, by 6,400 positions to 2.08 million. Compared with November 2003, doctors' offices added 59,100 employees. Overall, the healthcare and social assistance segment created 28,000 new jobs in November and 316,000 jobs since November 2003, the bureau said. Besides hospitals and doctors' offices, the segment includes nursing homes, residential care and social assistance.
CMS OKs specialty hospital
The CMS gave a green light to a nine-bed, physician-owned specialty hospital, ruling that the unidentified facility was under development before the Nov. 18, 2003, start of a federal moratorium on new physician investment in specialty hospitals. The advisory opinion, posted on the CMS' Web site, was the fifth released by the CMS. Only one of the five projects was rejected. Thirty-seven other requests are under review. The hospital's owners, a seven-member urology practice and 33 other physicians, had raised more than $2.3 million for the facility by November 2000 and leased space for it in a medical office building by April 2001. The moratorium is set to end June 7, 2005.