CHATTANOOGA, TN. (Times Free Press) -- Halfway through Erlanger Health System's fiscal year, the hospital has posted $2.5 million in losses — a significant improvement from Erlanger's grim financial status at this time last year, at which point the hospital had lost $10.3 million.

Despite the positive development, the hospital chalked up a $1.1 million loss in December, with a drop in inpatient surgeries during the month driving a large part of the deficit.

Adam Royer, associate administrator for Erlanger Medical Center, explained that the downturn in surgeries could be attributed to the departure of several physicians who have not been replaced, and to Christmas being held on a Tuesday, meaning more doctors took an entire week off during the holiday instead of half a week.

"In order to have full disclosure -- they started down before the holiday," interjected interim president and CEO Charlesetta Woodard-Thompson.

Read more on the story from our news partners at the Chattanooga Times Free Press.