HealthSouth Corp., Birmingham, Ala., at last issued a 2004 earnings report and said its losses had narrowed, but the company expects to report lower operating results this year and next because of Medicare's "75% rule," lower volume, payer pressure and competition. HealthSouth delayed the 2004 report to adjust financials to reflect massive accounting fraud. The company said it had an operating loss of $142 million and a net loss of $174.5 million on revenue of $3.75 billion in 2004. That compares with an operating loss of $491.5 million and a net loss of $434.6 million on revenue of $3.9 billion in 2003. HealthSouth in June restated financials for 2000 to 2002 and issued its delayed 2003 report. The latest filing moves the company closer to holding its first shareholders meeting since 2002, at which a new board likely will be elected. Officials previously said they hoped to hold the meeting by year-end. In its filing, HealthSouth said it would begin soliciting proxies for a meeting as soon as possible. While the company fired former Chief Executive Officer Richard Scrushy after the fraud was discovered, it cannot officially remove him from its board without a shareholders vote. -- by Joseph Mantone
HealthSouth issues '04 report, readies for meeting
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