Ramsay Health (ASX:RHC) share price falls 6% as earnings take a dive

The global hospital operator is still feeling the effects of COVID-19…

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The Ramsay Health Care Limited (ASX: RHC) share price is in focus this morning following the release of the company’s latest trading update.

At the time of writing, shares in the global health operator are down 6.24% to $67.75. The company’s shares are now roughly on par with their price on 20 October, when the company announced a change to surgical restrictions in New South Wales and Victoria.

However, today is all about the details in Ramsay Health’s FY22 trading update.

What’s moving the Ramsay Health share price today?

COVID-19 continues to weigh on the bottom-line

The Ramsay Health share price is sinking after the company released its results for the quarter ending 30 September 2021.

According to the release, unaudited revenue for the quarter came in at $3.2 billion, up 1.3% on the prior corresponding period. Although, the metrics begin to look underwhelming as we move down the financial statements.

In the first quarter of FY22, unaudited net profit after tax fell a dramatic 39.5% to $58.1 million. The company highlights this was due to the impacts from elective surgery restrictions and disruptions caused by isolation orders and lockdowns across Greater Sydney and Western Australia.

In addition, Victoria and Queensland also incurred disruptions due to COVID lockdowns, impeding activity levels. As a result, Ramsay Health experienced elevated costs for doing business.

Further, the healthcare giant took a hit in the United Kingdom with significant procedure cancellations and higher operating costs. These heightened costs included extra staffing costs associated with COVID-related isolation orders.

What else?

Commenting on the continued impacts, Ramsay CEO and managing director Craig McNally said:

While the COVID environment has continued to create significant disruption across our business, we are seeing strong underlying demand for health care services across our regions. Our team will continue to support the public health sector as we transition the business to an environment where the world learns to live with COVID.

On another note, the company wiped its $200 million worth of fixed-rate loan facilities. In order to do so, Ramsay is up for $11.3 million in early repayment fees. However, it is estimated to save a total of $13.2 million in finance costs over the next 3 years.

The Ramsay Health share price is up around 9% since the beginning of this year.

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Motley Fool contributor Mitchell Lawler has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Ramsay Health Care Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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