Two privately held for-profit hospital companies -- Ardent Health Services, Nashville, and Iasis Healthcare Corp., Franklin, Tenn. -- reported earnings for the quarter ended Sept. 30. For Ardent, the report was its first public release of quarterly financial figures. The company, which sold $225 million in publicly traded bonds in August, was compelled to publish results by a securities regulation governing companies with publicly traded debt. Ardent said it made $2 million on $334.6 million in revenue for the third quarter, reversing a loss of $1.1 million on $103.2 million in revenue in the year-ago quarter. The revenue growth came largely thanks to Ardent's acquisition of five hospitals and a health plan in the Albuquerque market last year. For the nine months ended Sept. 30, Ardent earned $3.9 million on $978.8 million in revenue. Profits were down 22% from the year-ago period, when Ardent earned $5 million on $269.9 million in revenue. Ardent owns and operates seven acute-care hospitals and 21 psychiatric hospitals.
Iasis said it earned $2 million on $283.2 million in revenue for its fourth quarter ended Sept. 30, compared with $6.8 million profit on $244.7 million in the year-ago quarter. The company's expenses for medical claims, bad debt and other items all rose at a slightly faster rate than revenue, which climbed 15.7%. For its fiscal year, Iasis saw profits drop by more than 25% to $20.6 million compared with $28.5 million in fiscal 2002. Revenue was up 14.6% to $1.1 billion. A $3.9 million loss on early retirement of debt and a $11.7 million charge to write down assets held for sale reduced profits. Admissions grew 7.4% and 7% for the quarter and fiscal year, respectively. Iasis owns or operates 14 hospitals. -- by Vince Galloro