Moody's affirms 'Baa1' on Palmetto Health

Moody's Investors Service affirmed its "Baa1" rating on Columbia, S.C.-based Palmetto Health's series 2005 bonds, affecting $180 million of debt.

The affirmation is a result of several factors, including the health system's healthy market position, good scale and clinical reputation as an academic medical center affiliated with Columbia-based University of South Carolina. Moody's also acknowledged the health system's variable financial performance driven by labor expenses.

The outlook is stable, reflecting Moody's expectation that the health system will benefit from its integration with Greenville (S.C.) Health System. The two systems recently finalized their partnership, establishing a 13-hospital entity. It remains important to note both Palmetto Health and Greenville have separate obligated groups.

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