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Kaleida Health sees glimmer of turnaround


By Bob Herman
Posted: August 26, 2014 - 5:15 pm ET
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Kaleida Health kept expenses in check in the first half of its 2014 fiscal year, giving the Buffalo, N.Y.-based system higher-than-expected surpluses.

Last year, Kaleida struggled to control expenditures, specifically labor costs and supplies, which resulted in a $15.3 million loss from operations. The trend was seen across the industry, as many not-for-profits tallied lower operating margins.

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So far in 2014, Kaleida's expenses declined 1.6% (PDF), most notably in employee salaries and supplies. Operating revenue, meanwhile, grew 0.7% to $637.9 million in the six-month period that ended June 30. That resulted in an operating surplus of $5.9 million—more than double what Kaleida executives budgeted for the first half of 2014 and a vast improvement from the $8.7 million operating loss in the same six-month period last year.

Including investment gains, Kaleida's total surplus in the first half reached $19.9 million compared with a $5.5 million net loss in the first six months of 2013.

Kaleida also increased its liquidity. Its cash and cash equivalents at the end of the six-month period were up more than 45% to $98.4 million as expenses related to capital projects decreased.

The system, which includes three acute-care hospitals, shuffled its top management this year. Former CEO James Kaskie and other executives left, and Jody Lomeo has since taken over the organization. Like other area health systems, Kaleida has been looking for ways to offset declining volumes and the resulting slow growth in revenue. In 2013, its inpatient discharges fell 7.4%. It did not release utilization numbers for the first half of this year.

Follow Bob Herman on Twitter: @MHbherman


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