Fitch downgrades Community Health Systems to 'CCC'

Fitch Ratings downgraded Franklin, Tenn. -based Community Health Systems' issuer default rating and outstanding bonds to "CCC" from "B," affecting $14.1 billion of debt.

The downgrade is a result of several factors, including CHS's high leverage and weakening operating results since the acquisition of Health Management Associates in 2014. In addition, Fitch acknowledged the execution risks associated with CHS's divestiture and repositioning plan and that CHS's hospital portfolio is exposed to smaller, rural markets, which may result in a decline of acute patient volumes. 

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