Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said it raised its underlying rating to A-minus from BBB-plus on Tarrant County Cultural Education Facilities Finance Corp., Texas' $96.7 million series 2009A and 2009B fixed-rate hospital revenue bonds, and series 2009C variable-rate hospital revenue bonds, issued for Hendrick Health System.

Standard & Poor's also affirmed its AAA/A-1 rating on HHS' series 2009C variable-rate bonds. The outlook is stable.

"The raised rating reflects our view the successful fiscal 2012 completion and startup of Hendrick's new patient tower, and our opinion of the system's dominant business position and robust sustained operating and balance sheet metrics," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Karl Propst.

More specifically, the rating is based on HHS': strong business position as the dominant provider of acute-care services within Taylor County, sound liquidity, light leverage, and history of solid operating profitability.

HHS has about $100 million of long-term debt outstanding.


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