Health Care

The emergency surgery-raising premiums and balancing budgets-was a success. HMOS have a bloom in their cheeks again. But hospitals and doctors are winning more power

The managed-care balloon burst spectacularly last July. In one week, four publicly traded health-maintenance organizations reported profits sharply lower than Wall Street had figured on. Pop! Giants United Health Care Corp. and Humana Inc. fell from grace. Pop! Earnings at smaller Mid-Atlantic Medical Services Inc. and Physicians Health Services Inc. tanked. HMO shares on average shed nearly a quarter of their value.

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