Advocat earnings sink in 2009 fourth quarter

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Profits at long-term care provider Advocat Inc. plummeted in the fourth quarter of 2009 as revenues increased slightly.

Net income for the fourth quarter fell by 86% to $176,000. That compares with a profit of about $1.3 million in the same quarter last year. Profits for the year dropped by more than half to $2.6 million. Advocat noted that the provision for professional liability was $2 million in 2009 compared to $1 million in 2008, an increase in expense of $1 million. Revenues for the quarter increased by nearly 3% to about $76 million. They rose to approximately $302 million for the 2009 calendar year. Both occupancy rates and operational costs rose in 2009, according to the company.

Advocat CEO William R. Council, III, disclosed in the statement the company's selection of a new COO, Kelly Gill. Advocat operates nursing homes in eight states, primarily in the Southeast.