14 hospitals with strong finances

Here are 14 hospitals and health systems with strong operational metrics and solid financial positions, according to recent reports from Moody's Investors Service, Fitch Ratings and S&P Global Ratings.

Note: This is not an exhaustive list. Hospital and health system names were compiled from recent credit rating reports and are listed in alphabetical order.

1. Dallas-based Baylor Scott & White Health has an "Aa3" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The health system has strong cash flow margins, and its favorable demographics will contribute to volume and revenue growth, according to Moody's.

2. Los Angeles-based Cedars-Sinai Medical Center has an "Aa3" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The hospital has strong margins, excellent balance sheet metrics and a strong reputation locally and nationally for patient care and research, according to Moody's.

3. Orange, Calif.-based Children's Hospital of Orange County has an "AA-" rating and stable outlook with Fitch. The hospital has a strong financial profile, and Fitch expects its capital-related ratios to improve.

4. Newark, Del.-based Christiana Care has an "Aa2" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The health system has solid margins and a robust balance sheet, according to Moody's.

5. Fort Worth, Texas-based Cook Children's Medical Center has an "Aa2" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The hospital has a strong market position and solid operating performance, according to Moody's.

6. Durham, N.C.-based Duke University Health System has an "Aa2" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The health system is a leading provider of tertiary and quaternary services and has solid margins and cash levels, according to Moody's.

7. Midland County (Texas) Hospital District has an "Aa3" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The district, which was created to operate a hospital in the county, has a manageable debt load, a modest pension liability and the ability to produce strong operating margins, according to Moody's.

8. Chicago-based Northwestern Memorial HealthCare has an "Aa2" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. Moody's expects that the health system's operating model and comprehensive IT systems will enable it to execute growth strategies while maintaining strong margins.

9. Winston-Salem, N.C.-based Novant Health has an "Aa3" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The credit rating agency expects Novant to continue generating strong cash flow margins in favorable markets.

10. Boston-based Partners HealthCare has an "Aa3" rating and stable outlook with Moody's and an "AA-" rating and stable outlook with S&P. The health system has an excellent reputation in the clinical and research spaces, a long track record of fundraising, and adequate balance sheet measures, according to Moody's.

11. St. Louis-based SSM Health Care has an "AA-" rating and stable outlook with Fitch. SSM has a strong financial profile, and Fitch expects the system to continue growing unrestricted liquidity and to maintain improved operational performance.

12. Appleton, Wis.-based ThedaCare has an "AA-" rating and stable outlook with Fitch. The health system has a leading market share in a stable service area and strong operating performance, according to Fitch.

13. Cincinnati-based TriHealth has an "AA-" rating and stable outlook with Fitch. Fitch expects the health system to maintain good operating ratios, leading to liquidity growth.

14. Yale New Haven (Conn.) Health has an "Aa3" rating and stable outlook with Moody's. The health system has a leading market position in Connecticut, with a broad reach for tertiary and quaternary patients from throughout the state, and strong brand recognition, according to Moody's.

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