Personal experiences often lead to compelling innovations. For Susanne Fortunato, an undiagnosed teenage illness launched her on a career path, and ultimately to founding her own health tech company. Along the way, she learned a lot about the state of technology in healthcare today and the gaps that have yet to be filled. 

In 2004, President George W. Bush launched an effort to spur the development of health information technology, including the adoption of electronic health records (EHRs). Over the intervening years, that push has expanded with regulations requiring all healthcare providers in the U.S. to use EHRs for scheduling, documenting, and treating patients. 

The goals behind this effort are laudable – higher patient engagement, a streamlined healthcare experience, cost savings, and improved care outcomes. The results have largely been positive. Multiple care providers can access a shared patient’s charts for more coordinated care, pharmacies receive electronic prescription orders, and approved family members or caretakers can access patient portals to assist loved ones. 

But these systems also come with downsides and areas of murky coverage. Some physicians and staff complain of the stress and inconvenience these obligatory systems can place on teams. Customization and multiple providers across EHRs mean that not all health systems or providers can access records seamlessly, leading to breakdowns in treatment or communication. And patients can be confused by protocols, information, and who has access to their sensitive information. 

Unfortunately, it was this latter reality in which Fortunato found herself. Faced with confusing information, overlapping doctors, and a mysterious illness, she suffered through a three-year odyssey seeking help. She credits a decidedly old-school approach to ultimately solving her health puzzle.  

When her treating physicians and their technology systems proved insufficient, Fortunato created a 3-inch binder filled with all her medical information and records that she lugged

HCA Healthcare, Inc. HCA recently announced preliminary results for the third quarter ended Sep 30, 2020.

For the period, the company expected revenues to be $13.30 billion on a preliminary basis, indicating a 4.8% rise from the year-ago quarter’s reported figure.

Notably, Income before income taxes is anticipated to be around $950 million in the to-be-reported quarter, implying a 3% decrease from the prior-year quarter’s reported number. Results for the September quarter consist of a reversal of $822 million received as a government stimulus in the second quarter, which is related to general distribution funds received from the Provider Relief Fund established by the CARES Act.

For the third quarter of 2020, Adjusted EBITDA is anticipated to be $2.03 billion, suggesting an 11.2% decline from the year-ago quarter’s reported figure.

HCA Healthcare expects a 4% dip in its same facility admissions and a 9% decline in facility equivalent admissions, both from the year-ago reported figures. For the third quarter, same facility emergency room visits are expected to drop 20% from the year-earlier reported number. The company’s same facility revenue per equivalent admission is projected to rise around 15% from the prior-year reported number on the back of acuity for patients and favourable payer mix.

Moreover, management announced that it will repay around $6 billion of government assistance funds received as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, HCA Healthcare undertook several measures to address the operational and financial challenges. These actions made the company stable enough to return or repay all its share of Provider Relief Fund distributions of $1.6 billion and $4.4 billion of Medicare accelerated payments. HCA Healthcare intends to fund the amount from available cash and cash flow from future operations.

In the last reported

HCA Healthcare  (HCA) – Get Report was rising Friday after the hospital operator provided third-quarter revenue guidance that exceeded Wall Street’s expectations.

Shares of the Nashville-based company were up 2.5% to $135.10.

HCA said it expects revenue to roughly total $13.3 billion, up from $12.69 billion a year ago, and ahead of FactSet’s call for revenue to be flat with a year earlier.

The company said it expects income before income taxes to come to $950 million, down from $979 million a year ago. 

This reflects a reversal of $822 million in government stimulus income recorded in the second quarter of 2020 related to general distribution funds under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

HCA said it will return, or repay early, about $6 billion of government assistance funds received as part of the CARES Act.

The company said had taken a conservative approach during the early days of the pandemic,  which “included a number of actions to meet the operational and financial challenges this global health crisis was expected to present.”

“As the initial immediacy of the emergency has passed, and with more information, and more experience managing our operations during the pandemic, we believe returning these taxpayer dollars is appropriate and the socially responsible thing to do,”  Sam Hazen, CEO, said in a statement.

HCA Healthcare is able to return, or repay early, all of its share of Provider Relief Fund distributions of about $1.6 billion and roughly $4.4 billion in Medicare accelerated payments.

Hazen added that “we greatly appreciate the CARES Act funding and the policymakers who fought hard to ensure hospitals would have the essential resources during the pandemic.”

HCA Healthcare said it expects to report full results Oct. 26.

BOSTON, LONDON and PARIS, Oct. 8, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — NelsonHall, the leading global analyst firm dedicated to helping organizations understand the ‘art of the possible’ in digital operations transformation, is delighted to appoint two new analysts in response to growing demand for business process services insight in the insurance, healthcare & life sciences, and pharmaceuticals sectors. These industries are becoming increasingly important in the current climate, and are undergoing major operational change, which is driving the need for deeper and more focused guidance on how organizations can transform their operations to thrive now and into the future.

Alisa Samoylova, based in London, has a background in scientific research and biotechnology, and also in procurement. After her initial assignment looking at procurement transformation, Alisa will focus on the pharma sector, starting with a major study of vendor capability from an operational perspective.

Ashley Singleton, based in Houston, is an experienced health insurance product development manager and business planning analyst, and will focus on healthcare payer and provider, as well as the wider insurance sector. Her initial assignment will be a major study of healthcare payer transformation.

These key appointments are the latest additions to NelsonHall’s global team, which is expanding in response to market demand for its unique brand of rigorous and insightful research and advice. John Willmott, NelsonHall’s CEO, said “I’m delighted to welcome Alisa and Ashley to our global analyst team, which is continuing to grow as organizations look for primary fact-based analysis that cuts through the market confusion. Now more than ever, organizations need to be able to see beyond the hype and soundbites to understand what’s really happening within their industry and how best to navigate these challenging times.”

About NelsonHall:

NelsonHall is the leading global analyst firm dedicated

This previous article described a profitable trading strategy with the stocks of the Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK), and this article described a strategy with the consumer staples stocks (XLP) of the S&P 500. Similarly, the healthcare stocks of the S&P 500 can be profitably traded to provide good returns.

Emulating the Healthcare Select Sector SPDR ETF

The analysis was performed on the on-line portfolio simulation platform Portfolio 123.

Since historic holdings of the Healthcare Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLV) are not published, a custom universe was constructed from the S&P 500 healthcare stocks of FactSet’s Revere Business Industry Classifications System.

The rule to set up the custom universe “S&P 500 (HEALTH)” in Portfolio 123 is: RBICS(HEALTHCARE).

The current holdings (61 stocks) of S&P 500 (HEALTH) are almost identical to the current holdings of XLV (63 stocks).

Backtesting of S&P 500 (HEALTH) universe

A backtest from 1/2/2009 to 9/23/2020 with all the cap-weighted stocks in the custom universe shows a 99% correlation with the performance of benchmark XLV and identical total returns of 364% over this period. A management fee of 0.3% was taken into account in the simulation, a bit higher than the 0.13% fee that the managers of XLV currently apply. In Figure 1 below, the red graph depicts the performance of the custom universe and the blue graph (mostly hidden) depicts the performance of XLV.

From the beginning of 2000, the custom universe shows 82% correlation with the performance of benchmark XLV and a total return of 355% versus 348% for XLV.

One can, therefore, expect that the custom universe S&P 500 (HEALTH) should reasonably accurately reflect the performance of the cap-weighted holdings of XLV, and stocks selected by the model should not differ much from what would have been selected from a universe of the