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Centene posts 13.3% fall in fourth-quarter profit

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Feb 4 (Reuters) - Centene Corp reported a 13.3% fall in quarterly profit on Tuesday, hurt by higher medical costs.

Net earnings attributable to Centene fell to $209 million, or 49 cents per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, from $241 million, or 57 cents per share, a year earlier.

Total revenue of the company, which last month closed its $15.27 billion buyout of smaller rival WellCare Health Plans, rose to $18.86 billion from $16.56 billion. (Reporting by Manojna Maddipatla and Tamara Mathias in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)