USPI added 3,400+ physicians last year: 5 earnings call insights

Dallas-based United Surgical Partners International is primed for continued growth after it recruited more than 3,400 physicians and added about 90 high-acuity service lines in 2021, the company revealed in its fourth-quarter earnings call Feb. 8, as transcribed by Seeking Alpha.

Five insights:

1. USPI, a subsidiary of Tenet Healthcare, now has more than 11,000 physicians, the most of any ASC chain. Its closest two competitors, Deerfield, Ill.-based Surgical Care Affiliates and Brentwood, Tenn.-based Surgery Partners, have about 8,500 physicians and 4,000 physicians, respectively.

2. USPI also leads the pack in terms of the number of ASCs and surgical facilities it operates — more than 440 in 35 states. The company paid $1.1 billion to acquire Towson, Md.-based SurgCenter Development, adding 85 ASCs to its network, and spent $78 million to acquire the ownership of eight Compass Surgical Partners ASCs last year.

3. The acquisition of SurgCenter included a five-year partnership and development agreement to build at least 50 de novo ASCs. By 2025, USPI plans to have more than 600 ASCs in its network.

4. Last year, USPI's net operating revenue spiked 31 percent to $2.7 billion. This year, the company expects net operating revenue to rise to $3.2 billion or $3.3 billion, with surgical cases increasing 3 percent to 4 percent year over year.

"Our strong results for the year were driven by high patient acuity, a favorable payer mix, as well as very effective cost control," according to Daniel Cancelmi, executive vice president and CFO of Tenet Healthcare.

5. This year, the company said it plans to allocate more capital to grow its ASC business and expand hospital growth opportunities, including higher-acuity service offerings.

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