Moody's affirms 'Baa1' on Charleston Area Medical Center, maintains negative outlook

Moody's Investors Service affirmed its "Baa1" rating on Charleston (W.Va.) Area Medical Center, affecting $262 million of outstanding debt.

The affirmation is a result of several factors, including the medical center's improving operating margin, expense reductions enacted under the direction of a newly appointed CFO, solid market position and relative size.  Moody's unfavorably viewed the medical center's weak service area and lingering effects of an EMR implementation such as declines in liquidity.

The outlook remains negative, reflecting the challenges the health system needs to overcome to maintain the operating margin improvements.

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