More Pa. hospital cuts on the way: report

The prognosis is pain: Two-thirds of Pennsylvania hospitals surveyed by the Hospital & Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania plan to freeze hiring, and nearly half plan both to reduce current staff and to cancel or delay building projects or renovations, according to HAP's checks with 104 (out of the total of 164) Pennsylvania acute-care hospitals.

Meds won't save the slow-growing state economy: Total healthcare and "social assistance" jobs in Pennsylvania fell to 935,000, from 938,500, in the year ended Feb. 28, reversing a trend of the past several years in which walk-in clinics, doctors' offices and home healthcare services grew fast enough to offset a longterm trend in hospital and nursing-home layoffs, HAP added, citing state labor data. That's not happening anymore; the cuts are bigger than the hires; even childcare is cutting back. 

Hospitals cut a net 3,900 jobs in Pennslvania last year, leaving the total at 268,800, which is below 2007 levels.