Orlando Health upgraded amid strong operating performance, Fitch says

Orlando (Fla.) Health has been upgraded to "AA-" because of its sustained operating performance, healthy financial position and strong local market share, Fitch Ratings said.

The move upward from "A+" refers to both the health system's Issuer Default Rating and approximately $340 million in bonds it owns. Orlando Health competes locally in Central Florida with Nashville, Tenn.-based HCA Healthcare and Altamonte Springs, Fla.-based AdventHealth.

"The one-notch upgrade to 'AA-'/Stable reflects the continued strength of OHI's operating performance, growth in unrestricted liquidity, and excellent market position in a demographically favorable market," Fitch said.

Orlando Health was able to shrug off most of the challenges posed by the various COVID-19 waves, carrying out elective surgeries largely unaffected, Fitch said. The healthcare system has also made "great strides" in reducing labor costs.

The system includes 11 wholly owned hospitals with 3,200 beds. It is one of eight statutory teaching hospitals in Florida.

Orlando Health earlier this month said it had hired Amy Wheeler as the CFO of Dr. P. Phillips Hospital as well as naming her assistant vice president for the system's southeastern region.

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