Iasis’ 4Q earnings mixed

Medicaid program hammered by legislation

Iasis Healthcare announced its fiscal fourth-quarter results Thursday, which were highlighted by a steep $37.5 million drop in insurance premiums. Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization fell 5 percent to $70.7 million during the quarter, while conventional net earnings from continuing operations fell almost 40 percent to $3.0 million.

“The ongoing economic and industry headwinds, especially with regard to substantial Medicaid cuts and increasing uncompensated care, presented significant challenges, particularly in certain of our markets, during our 2012 year,” Carl Whitmer, Iasis president and CEO, said in a company statement.

Still, net revenue for the fourth quarter totaled $633 million, a decrease of 2.2 percent in the prior-year quarter. Acute-care revenue for the quarter increased $23.0 million or nearly 5 percent.

“As we look toward the coming year, we continue to focus on integrating our operational strategies designed for navigating continuing healthcare reform, executing our development strategies and enhancing our constant commitment to operational excellence across all clinical and business sectors,” Whitmer said.

Net revenue for the year ended Sept. 30 totaled $2.5 billion. Acute-care revenue increased $187 million or 10.5 percent compared to the prior year, while premium revenue at Health Choice declined $188 million, or 24.8 percent, compared to the prior year.

Whitmer said he was pleased with the company’s overall performance, including its volume growth, improved quality metrics and patient satisfaction as well as effective cost management and business development efforts. Specifically, on the development front, Iasis’ partnership with Wisconsin-based Aurora Health Care — a story we reported here — is representative of the relationships Whitmer seeks for the purpose of acquiring, building and managing health care facilities of varying types in Wisconsin and northern Illinois.