Share “HCA Holdings 1Q profit more than doubles”

HCA Holdings 1Q profit more than doubles

Associated Press Published: May 3, 2012

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — HCA Holdings Inc., the operator of the largest U.S. hospital chain, said Thursday its profit more than doubled in the first quarter on a revenue adjustment from Medicare and a decrease in one-time costs.

HCA said its profit grew to $540 million, or $1.18 per share, from $240 million, or 42 cents per share. In the first quarter of 2011 the company took a charge of $181 million, or 32 cents per share, after terminating a management agreement, and in the latest quarter, a Medicare revenue adjustment added $188 million to its revenue and 22 cents per share to its profit. Revenue rose 13 percent, to $8.41 billion from $7.41 billion.

Analysts expected HCA to report a profit of 96 cents per share and $8.38 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.

HCA said admissions at hospitals open at least a year grew 3.2 percent. At those hospitals, equivalent admissions rose 4.8 percent. Equivalent admissions is a figure that includes both inpatient admissions and outpatient procedures. Revenue per equivalent admission at facilities open at least a year edged up 0.3 percent.

Total equivalent admissions increased 11 percent to 711,100.

At the end of the quarter, HCA had 164 hospitals and 109 surgery centers.

The company raised its annual profit forecast to account for the Medicare revenue adjustment. It now expects to earn between $3.57 and $3.77 per share, up from $3.35 to $3.55 per share. HCA is still forecasting $32 billion to $33 billion in revenue for the full year.

Analysts are projecting income of $3.54 per share and $33.27 billion in revenue, on average.

Shares of HCA rose 14 cents to $27.13 in afternoon trading.