Prices for hospital services rose 0.4% in February, down from the 1.1% jump in January, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index. For the 12 months ended in February, the hospital CPI was up 8.6%, which compared with a 6% rise in the year-ago period.
The physician CPI declined 0.6% in February, down from the 0.2% rise in January. For the 12-month period, the physician CPI rose 2.1%, which compared with a 4% increase in the year-ago period. In general on a seasonally adjusted basis, the CPI was virtually unchanged in February, following a 0.4% rise in January. -- by Cinda Becker