HealthLeaders Media and Bank of America Merrill Lynch Begin Yearlong "Executive Insight" Project

Thu Feb 14, 2013 9:15am EST

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

  DANVERS, MA, Feb 14 (Marketwire) -- 
HealthLeaders Media, a division of HCPro, Inc., today announced the
kickoff of a new relationship with Bank of America Merrill Lynch in which
the two companies will collaborate on a series of research projects in
2013 designed to provide healthcare executives with insight into the
economics of their industry.

     "The four-part series will consist of quarterly 'buzz' surveys on key
industry topics, the publication of special Executive Insight reports
analyzing the results of the surveys, and executive roundtable
discussions with senior finance executives from Bank of America Merrill
Lynch and leading provider organizations," said Matthew Cann, vice
president of media and analytics at HealthLeaders Media. "We are also
launching a dedicated Executive Insight Center microsite on (, featuring an
array of custom content and additional expert analysis."

    The first project, focused on the changing structures of capital finance,
made its debut this week. The buzz survey conducted as part of the
project found that while the bond market is still, by a slim margin, the
most popular funding source preferred by healthcare executives, only one
out of three survey respondents intends to use bonds as a primary source
of capital in the next two to three years. In fact, 44% don't intend to
tap bonds at all (climbing to 50% among C-level executives), while
roughly 30% intend to rely on investment income as a primary source of
funding for capital projects.

     "The results of our proprietary survey of U.S. healthcare executives
show that healthcare reform and the threat of sequestration of federal
funding remain significant drivers of capital investment as providers
prepare for their impact," said John Hesselmann, Specialized Industries
executive at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Part of the company's Global
Commercial Banking business, Specialized Industries provides healthcare
clients with such solutions as core credit and treasury management, and
also helps provide leasing, retirement capabilities and other
capital-raising products.

     Hesselmann noted that survey respondents by an overwhelming margin said
changes to healthcare reform laws were the biggest drivers of capital
investments, with 65% saying they are major influence and another 23%
citing them as a minor influence.

    The buzz survey also found that healthcare organizations are prioritizing
by investing more in information systems and IT infrastructure, while
cutting back in some cases on things like new facilities. Regardless of
which specific areas are receiving the greatest allocations, the survey
found that nearly all healthcare organizations are making some level of
capital commitments, with just 6% of surveyed executives planning no
capital investment at all in the next 12-18 months.

     "We are primarily investing in three areas: health information
technology; facility upgrades; and mergers, acquisitions, and other
partnerships," said Robert S. Shapiro, executive vice president and CFO
at North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System in Manhasset, N.Y. "We'd
be doing these even if there were no major changes coming in how care is
delivered and paid for, except that we are putting more emphasis on

     The second research project in the collaboration between HealthLeaders
Media and Bank of America Merrill Lynch is scheduled for an April launch
and will focus on capital finance and industry consolidation.

    HealthLeaders Media
 HealthLeaders Media, a division of HCPro, Inc., is a
leading multi-platform media company dedicated to meeting the business
information needs of healthcare executives and professionals. As an
integrated media company, HealthLeaders Media includes HealthLeaders
magazine,, the HealthLeaders Media Intelligence
Unit, HealthLeaders Media Rounds events, HealthLeaders Media
Breakthroughs reports, and California HealthFax. All these platforms may
be found online at

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    Bank of America Merrill Lynch is the marketing name for the global
banking and global markets businesses of Bank of America Corporation.
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Amy Wieman
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