- HCA Holdings has released preliminary earnings guidance, reporting a 5.1% rise in same-facility admissions and is predicting an almost 10% jump in revenue compared to last year. This represents its fourth robust quarter in a row and a 19% boost from early 2013 in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.
- CEO Milton Johnson credited gains from the Affordable Care Act and "continued favorable volume and payer trends in our core operations."
- The hospital operator also announced partnership with the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute, in which the groups will "conduct a broad array of research initiatives that build on HCA's clinical expertise, ability to implement interventions at scale and sophisticated informatics capabilities."
Impressive but not unbelievable: Weak Q1 growth in 2014 is making these numbers look particularly strong, although there is economic evidence of volume growth (Altarum reported 3.6% growth in the 12-month average hospital volume as of February).
Still, "I don't think HCA will keep that up" as patients continue to seek treatment outside of hospitals, said Megan Neuburger, managing director for Fitch Ratings. HCA will have to successfully expand its outpatient offerings to continue growth, Neuburger suggested.
The company will announce its Q1 earnings on May 5.