Wheaton Franciscan acquisition boosts Ascension’s quarterly revenue, patient volume

Total operating revenue up more than $400 million

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare officially joined Ascension on March 1.

St. Louis-based Ascension reported a significant boost in total operating  revenue and patient volume in its first financial quarter since officially acquiring Glendale-based Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare on March 1.

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare officially joined Ascension on March 1.

From June 30 through Sept. 30 of this year, Ascension reported a total operating revenue of $5.63 billion, up from $5.2 billion during the same three-month period in 2015.

The health care system also noted a significant increase in patient volume, including a 4.3 percent bump in inpatient admissions, a 3 percent spike in inpatient surgeries and a 9.8 percent increase in emergency room visits.

“The increase in volumes is primarily due to the addition of Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare — Southeast Wisconsin, Inc. (Wheaton) facilities, effective March 1, 2016,” an analysis of the hospital system’s quarterly financial report read.

Ascension has been acquiring Wisconsin hospital systems since 1999, when it bought Columbia St. Mary’s and its three hospitals and several clinics in the Milwaukee area. The St. Louis-based health care system then acquired Ministry Health Care and Affinity Health System in 2013 and completed its purchase of Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare this March.

A BizTimes cover story in December examined several aspects of the merger with Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare.

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Ben Stanley
Ben Stanley, former BizTimes Milwaukee reporter.