What happened

Shares of Bausch Health (NYSE:BHC) were up 10% Wednesday as of 3:50 p.m. EST. 

Though long-term shareholders haven't been well rewarded, with shares up less than 8% over the past three years, recent returns have been better. Since the start of 2021, the stock has gained 24%, and the company says its business recovery is well under way. 

So what 

The healthcare company released a preliminary financial update today for the fourth quarter and full year 2020, saying the results confirm the company is executing its business recovery from the pandemic impacts. 

Close-up of woman's eye indicating eye care.

Image source: Getty Images.

Bausch Health said its full-year 2020 revenue will exceed the high end of its most recent guidance. The company also said strong cash flow in the fourth quarter will result in more than $1 billion of cash generated from operations for the full year. 

Now what

Bausch Health is also in a better fiscal position going into 2021. It has no debt maturing, or mandatory amortization payments, until 2024, after using operating cash flow to pay off approximately $900 million in debt in 2020.

In a presentation earlier today at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, Bausch said Q4 revenue exceeded $2.2 billion, helping it surpass $8 billion in 2020 total revenue. 

In August 2020, Bausch Health said it would pursue the spin-off of its Bausch + Lomb eye health business into a separately traded public company. Today, the company said it anticipates meeting all internal objectives for the spin-off by the third quarter of 2021. 

Shareholders who have held on through the company's business recovery are finally seeing more light at the end of the tunnel and should expect the progress to continue throughout 2021.