Home Health, Hospice Help Drive Record Earnings for Ensign

The Ensign Group (Nasdaq: ENSG) posted strong first-quarter financial results Thursday, buoyed, in part, by the California-based provider’s particularly profitable home health and hospice businesses.

While pursuing expansion plans in both home health and hospice, Ensign reported a consolidated adjusted net income of $24.1 million in the first quarter of 2018, an increase of about 35% compared to the prior year’s quarter. Ensign’s home health and hospice segments contributed to roughly a quarter of that companywide net income.

The Ensign Group is the parent company of 183 skilled nursing operations, 22 of which include assisted living operations, 51 assisted and independent living operations, 22 hospice agencies, 20 home health agencies and four home care businesses across 15 states.

Ensign recently stated it was going to pursue expansions across its home health and hospice business lines and follow the same strategy that built up its skilled nursing portfolio. Previously, CEO and President Chris Christensen stated the company would consider spinning off its home health and hospice operating subsidiary into a separate entity.

Specifically, Ensign netted a total of about $6.1 million for its home health and hospice portfolio subsidiary, which goes by the name Cornerstone Healthcare, Inc., during 2018’s first quarter, a 41.1% upswing from Q1 of 2017.

Overall revenue for home health and hospice came in at slightly less than $40 million total, a comparative increase of about 24%. Combined Q1 revenue in 2018 was split about evenly between businesses, though Ensign’s home health business earned slightly more than its hospice segment.

“We are pleased to report that we achieved a record quarter as the improvements we experienced in the fourth quarter continued into the first quarter,” Christensen in a statement. …“We are also pleased to report that our home health and hospice and assisted living businesses continue to achieve outstanding results.”

Ensign has been steadily acquiring in the home health and hospice sector, including recently entering the Oklahoma market by acquiring Excell Home Care and Hospice, along with Excell Private Care Services.

The company’s stock was up more than 10% as of end-of-day trading Thursday to $31.60 per share.

Written by Robert Holly

Robert Holly

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