POTENTIAL TOWER PROJECT: STPH is in the planning phase for an inpatient tower project that will likely move forward in the next year.
Substantially all of STPH's operations are administered under a JOA with Ochsner.
Over the last four audited years, STPH has averaged a 5.8% operating margin and an 11.6% operating EBTIDA margin, stronger than Fitch's 'A' category medians of 3% and 9.4%, respectively.
Since October 2014, STPH and Ochsner have been operating under a JOA, which combined the two organizations operating results in the North Shore region.
In terms of service lines, STPH and Ochsner have coordinated in expanding services and recruiting specialty physicians in primary care, neurology, neurosurgery, pediatrics, cardiology, gastroenterology, urology and infectious disease.
Financially the combined operating income (the amount STPH and Ochsner share) has increased every year with the 2017 amount projected to be approximately $25 million, compared to $19 million in 2016.
STPH is expected to move forward on an inpatient tower project within the next year.
STPH has financial flexibility at the current rating level to undertake the project given its consistent financial performance, liquidity growth, and front loaded debt structure.
STPH has been steadily investing in its plant, with capital spending averaging 115.4% of depreciation over the last four audited years, relative to a median of 121.3%.
At June 30, 2017 STPH had $102.1 million in long-term debt and all the debt is fixed rate bonds.