Lifespan, Rhode Island’s largest hospital system, is reporting strong operating earnings as rival Care New England continues to lose money.
Lifespan reported $14.4 million in operating earnings during the first nine months of 2017 -- up from $1.3 million during the same period in 2016.
Meanwhile, Care New England recently reported a nine-month operating loss of $46.5 million. Rhode Island’s second-largest hospital system has been laying off employees and cutting costs in preparation for a planned sale to Massachusetts-based Partners HealthCare.
Lifespan attributed its higher earnings to increases in hospitalizations, primary care visits and the opening of a new clinic as well as continued growth of the Lifespan Cancer Institute and other specialty medicine centers. Emergency room visits also rose.
Lifespan also added the equivalent of 298 full-time employees during the third-quarter, including 140 at Rhode Island Hospital and 106 at The Miriam Hospital.
Lifespan reported third-quarter operating gains of $6.6 million, compared with $5 million during the same three-month period in 2016.
Dr. Timothy J. Babineau, president and CEO of Lifespan, attributed the health system’s improved earnings to “Lifespan’s relentless focus over the past few years on improving the care we deliver and controlling the cost of that care.’’
Lifespan also has seen year over year growth, he said, in the number patients seeking care.
“While our profit margins remain minimal,’’ Babineau said in a statement, “we remain optimistic about our financial future despite an incredibly challenging operating environment.”
Lifespan Affiliates’ Nine-Month Operating Earnings:
Rhode Island Hospital: $14.1 million
The Miriam Hospital: $4.4 million
Bradley Hospital: $1.9 million
Newport Health Care Corp.: ($8.4 million)
Gateway Healthcare: ($3.4 million)
Lifespan Home Medical: ($269,000)