Fitch Ratings upgraded to BBB-plus from BBB the ratings on approximately $917 million of outstanding debt issued by the New Jersey Health Care Facilities Financing Authority and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority on behalf of Barnabas Health.

Fitch also revised the outlook to stable from positive.

"The upgrade to BBB-plus is supported by the continuation of the significant financial improvement which started with fiscal 2009 and has continued through fiscal 2011," Fitch analysts said in a report.

Fitch also cited the health care system's growing liquidity, solid debt service coverage, and significant market presence.

Barnabas Health is New Jersey's largest health care system with six acute-care hospitals and 3,142 acute-care beds, numerous ambulatory locations, and 4,700 affiliated physicians.

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