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Baptist Health South Florida's surplus soars


By Bob Herman
Posted: August 16, 2014 - 12:01 am ET
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Baptist Health South Florida's bottom line grew considerably in the first nine months of its fiscal year thanks to huge investment gains and higher patient utilization.

Inpatient admissions increased 2.7% in the nine-month period ended June 30, while visits to the emergency department rose 4.2%, according to the system's latest disclosure to bondholders (PDF). Baptist, a six-hospital system headquartered in Coral Gables, Fla., also said urgent-care visits increased 6.9% year-over-year. More patients also went in for inpatient and outpatient surgeries, but that growth was nominal.

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Those utilization patterns led to an 8.3% boost in patient revenue in the nine-month period, totaling nearly $1.66 billion. Patient revenue in the third-quarter alone jumped 13.5%. Total revenue increased 4.4% in the first nine months of this year to $1.7 billion, according to the system's unaudited financials (PDF).

Ultimately, Baptist was able to post an 8.1% operating margin in the first three quarters of 2014 with an operating surplus of $137.3 million. That was an improvement from its 7.7% operating margin and $125.5 million operating surplus in the same period of 2013.

Even larger was Baptist's overall margin, which factors in investment income. Baptist's total surplus soared 75% year-over-year, reaching $374.6 million in its first nine months. That equated to a 22% margin. Baptist had almost $2.9 billion in investment assets as of June 30, mostly in corporate equities, corporate bonds and foreign government bonds.

The system's most profitable hospital in the nine-month period was Baptist Hospital of Miami, a 672-bed facility. The hospital recorded a 14.3% operating margin on $675 million of revenue. On the flip side, Baptist Health Medical Group, which includes more than 100 system physicians, lost more than $39 million in the first nine months of fiscal 2014.

Follow Bob Herman on Twitter: @MHbherman


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