NEW YORK - Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said it revised its outlook to positive from stable and at the same time affirmed its AA-minus long-term rating and underlying rating (SPUR) on Bell County Health Facilities Development Corp. and Tarrant County Health Facilities Development Corp., Texas' $189.8 million series 2007 and series 2010A fixed-rate hospital revenue bonds issued on behalf of Cook Children's Medical Center Inc. (Cook Children's).

At the same time, Standard & Poor's affirmed its AA-minus/A-1-plus dual rating on Cook Children's $100 million series 2010B and 2010C variable-rate hospital bonds.

The series 2010B and 2010C bonds are backed by self-liquidity provided by more than $300 million of unrestricted cash/cash equivalents, fixed-income securities, and qualifying equities to guarantee Cook Children's unconditional tender offer to buy back the bonds if necessary.

"The positive outlook reflects our view of Cook Children's robust financial results and strong business position as well as our anticipation that it will maintain its maintain its overall balance sheet strength," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Karl Propst. "A rating upgrade is likely within the two year-outlook period if Cook Children's sustains its solid operating results and preserves its balance sheet strength," continued Propst.

Cook Children's currently has about $298 million in total long-term debt outstanding.

 

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