SOURCE: VHA Inc.

March 24, 2011 10:00 ET

Annual VHA Supplier Summit Prioritizes Cost Reduction Solutions for Hospitals and Non-Acute Care Sites

New and Existing Business Relationships Strengthened Through Collaboration and Engagement

IRVING, TX--(Marketwire - March 24, 2011) - VHA Inc., the national health care network, recently concluded its eleventh annual supplier summit that enabled more than 500 attendees to work collaboratively to create new and enhanced cost reduction strategies that will help VHA member hospitals and non-acute care providers to reduce costs, strengthen cash flow and improve efficiencies. 

Because of the growing importance of purchased services and the increasing impact that non-acute providers have in the health care market, this conference attracted representatives from 150 supplier organizations. Importantly, VHA recognized several outstanding suppliers that its members have identified as industry leaders for their support of VHA member organizations. 

The 2010 award winners were:

Acute:
Overall Member Satisfaction -- EDCO Group, Inc.
Member Satisfaction Growth -- CDW
Sales Growth -- ePlus Technology, Inc.
Participation Growth -- MD Buyline
Supplier of the Year -- EDCO Group, Inc.

Non-acute:
Distributor of the Year -- National Distribution & Contracting, Inc.
Supplier of the Year -- Business Interiors by Staples
Breakout Supplier -- GE Healthcare
Partnership Award -- AT&T
Sales Growth -- Smith & Nephew

"VHA's supplier summit is an exceptional opportunity for attendees to come together and collaborate on opportunities that support the financial and operational needs of our acute-care and non-acute care providers," said Pete Allen, senior vice president of Sourcing Operations at Novation. "With health care reform exerting new pressures on our members, we worked especially hard to develop an agenda that provides a collaborative and beneficial experience for our attendees that is devoted to driving new cost reductions and providing revenue enhancement strategies for VHA and Provista members -- plus additional programs that address a broad spectrum of their current needs."

This year's summit also included informative sessions that explained how suppliers specializing in purchased services, (telecommunications, outsourced food programs, health IT services relating to electronic medical records and nurse staffing etc.) could engage with Provista, a VHA-owned GPO. Provista serves health care, as well as non health care markets within the education, hospitality, and corporate arena.

"Attending the summit keeps us current with the very latest strategies we need to help us successfully plan and execute our organizational relationships with VHA member facilities," said Rick Ferreira, President of Ascent, who hosted a session on having an effective business relationship with VHA. "With the ever-changing healthcare environment, it's critical that now, more than ever, we provide cost saving solutions for hospitals. The VHA Supplier Summit always provides an opportunity to share useful, practical and innovative strategies with other suppliers, and to collaborate with VHA team members in order to drive our collective goal: growing member savings."

About VHA -- VHA Inc., based in Irving, Texas, is a national network of not-for-profit health care organizations that work together to drive maximum savings in the supply chain arena, set new levels of clinical performance and identify and implement best practices to improve operational efficiency and clinical outcomes. In 2009, VHA delivered record savings and value of $1.47 billion to members. Formed in 1977, VHA serves more than 1,350 hospitals and more than 30,000 non-acute care providers nationwide, coordinating delivery of its programs and services through 16 regional offices. VHA has been listed as one of the best places to work in health care by Modern Healthcare since 2008 and one of the best places to work in IT by Computer World since 2007.

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