Shriners vote to accept insurance money

SAN ANTONIO (AP) - the Shriners have voted to accept insurance money for the first time in their 87-year history in the hope of keeping all of its children's hospitals open.

Rod Brown is chairman of the Shriners hospital in Greenville, S.C. He says the group gave preliminary approval to the insurance plan at its annual meeting in San Antonio, but no decision is final until the close of the meeting on Thursday.

The Shriners have always provided care free of charge, using their endowment to help whoever they can. But the endowment is now badly depleted and could force the closure of some hospitals unless
the system makes changes.

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