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SAFEGUARD HEALTH ENTERPRISES INC. REPORTS SUBSTANTIAL INCREASE IN FOURTH QUARTER AND YEAR END NET INCOME AND EARNINGS

 SAFEGUARD HEALTH ENTERPRISES INC. REPORTS SUBSTANTIAL INCREASE
 IN FOURTH QUARTER AND YEAR END NET INCOME AND EARNINGS
 ANAHEIM, Calif., Jan. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Safeguard Health Enterprises Inc. (NASDAQ-NMS: SFGD) announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and year ended Dec. 31, 1991. For the year, earnings per share increased 87 percent to $.58, compared to $.31 a year ago. Net income increased 86 percent to $2,605,000 compared to $1,403,000 a year earlier. Health care revenues also increased 1 percent to $60,780,000 compared to $60,086,000 a year ago.
 For the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 1991, earnings per share increased 500 percent to $.18 compared to $.03 per share for the fourth quarter of 1990. Net income increased 494 percent to $825,000 compared to $139,000 a year earlier. Health care revenues increased 1 percent to $15,485,000 compared to $15,273,000 for the same quarter a year ago.
 "We are pleased to report a significant increase in net income and earnings per share for 1991 and for the fourth quarter. As noted, net income and earnings per share for 1991 were up over 86 percent compared to last year, and the trend towards increasing net income and earnings per share is anticipated to continue," said Steven J. Baileys, D.D.S., president and chief operating officer.
 "The increase in net income and earnings per share for the fourth quarter and for 1991 is a result of the significant improvement in our dental plan operations, the improvement in our dental office subsidiary and lower overall health care costs. Lower general and administrative expenses also positively contributed to the increases. We are also pleased to note that the results for the fourth quarter and the year were at the upper end of analysts' estimates," Baileys said.
 "Despite continuing workforce reductions in the defense, aerospace and retailing industries during 1991 which resulted in somewhat lower membership at year end, we are pleased to note that revenue for the fourth quarter and the year increased slightly. Additionally, Safeguard's sales efforts resulted in Safeguard adding more new midsize groups in the fourth quarter of 1991 than in
any quarter in the last three years. Based upon preliminary results, that trend is continuing into 1992. We are also continuing to actively search for acquisitions of companies operating in business lines similar to Safeguard. We view this as another viable means of increasing revenue, net income and plan membership over the long term," Baileys said.
 "Safeguard's dental office subsidiary continues to post significant increases in revenue and improvement in operating expenses. Revenues increased 24 percent in 1991 over 1990. With more services being provided to plan members by Safeguard's dental office subsidiary, Safeguard has realized the advantages of an integrated health care delivery system, and the positive results of this system are anticipated to continue during 1992," Baileys said.
 Safeguard operates managed care dental programs in 13 states providing dental care benefits to over 665,000 members through over 2,300 participating provider locations.
 SAFEGUARD HEALTH ENTERPRISES INC.
 Earnings Summary
 (000's omitted, except per share data)
 Year Ended Dec. 31, Percent
 1991 1990 Change
 Health care revenues $60,780 $60,086 1
 Income before taxes 4,268 2,302 85
 Net income 2,605 1,403 86
 Net income per share $.58 $.31 87
 Average shares
 outstanding 4,496 4,522 ---
 Quarter Ended Dec. 31, Percent
 1991 1990 Change
 Health care revenues $15,485 $15,273 1
 Income before taxes 1,349 227 494
 Net income 825 139 494
 Net income per share $.18 $.03 500
 Average shares
 outstanding 4,575 4,446 ---
 -0- 1/30/92 R
 /CONTACT: Ronald I. Brendzel, senior VP of Safeguard Health Enterprises Inc., 714-778-1284/
 (SFGD) CO: Safeguard Health Enterprises Inc. ST: California IN: HEA SU: ERN


DM-CH -- LA011 -- 5385 01/30/92 15:42 EST
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Date:Jan 30, 1992
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