Rating Agency Confirms “Stable Outlook” for Saint Francis Bonds

Fitch Ratings has affirmed the AA- rating with a stable outlook for $154.5 million in revenue bonds issued by the Industrial Development Authority of the County of Cape Girardeau, Mo. on behalf of Saint Francis Healthcare System. In 2013, Fitch Ratings assigned a rating of AA- with a stable outlook on this bond issuance for the Building on Excellence renovation, expansion and construction project and refinancing of existing debt.

“Saint Francis Healthcare System’s operating profitability has been consistently strong with operating margins averaging 7.7 percent since fiscal 2009 and equal to 6 percent in fiscal 2014 and the interim period, exceeding Fitch’s ‘AA’ category median of 3.9 percent. Strong operating profitability has been driven by strategic investments in key service lines, physician alignment initiatives and effective expense management practices,” according to an April 1 statement by Fitch Ratings.

“Investors continue to see the bright future of Saint Francis Medical Healthcare System with the Building on Excellence project,” said Steven C. Bjelich, FACHE-D, Saint Francis President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our nearly complete Building on Excellence facility expansion and services will help us be better equipped to serve the needs of our community.”

The multiphased Building on Excellence construction and renovation plan includes the new five-story patient Tower with dedicated areas for orthopedics, neurosciences, rehabilitation, surgical and medical services with a new entrance on the facility’s south side. Renovation of the Medical Center’s northeast side includes a new Pavilion for women’s and children’s services and dedicated entrance. The project will add more than 217,000 square feet to the Medical Center, bringing the facility to 1.6 million square feet.

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