HCA profit soars 58% to $920M in Q4

Nashville, Tenn.-based HCA Holdings recorded a 58 percent spike in profits in the fourth quarter of 2016 as it benefitted from higher patient volume and gains on sales of facilities. 

The for-profit hospital operator said revenue increased 3.8 percent year over year to $10.64 billion in the fourth quarter of 2016.

The financial boost was attributable, in part, to higher patient volumes. HCA said same-facility admissions and same-facility emergency room visits each rose 1.6 percent year over year, while inpatient surgeries increased 1.4 percent. 

In the fourth quarter, HCA also recorded a $15 million gain due the sales of facilities and benefitted from a recent appellate court decision that reduced a judgment in a breach of contract case by more than half.

In December 2015, HCA was ordered to pay nearly $434 million to the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City for allegedly failing to fulfill pledges it made when it acquired Kansas City, Mo.-based Health Midwest's 12 hospitals in 2003. Earlier this month, the Missouri Court of Appeals reduced the judgment to $188 million.

After factoring in expenses, HCA ended the fourth quarter with net income of $920 million, up 58 percent from $582 million in the same period of the year prior.

Looking at full-year 2016 results, HCA recorded revenue of $41.49 billion, up from $39.68 billion in 2015. The company ended 2016 with net income of $2.89 billion, a 35.7 percent increase from net income of $2.13 billion the year prior.

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