October 25, 2010 13:15 ET

VHA Inc. Hosts First VHA SupplyNetworks™ Executive Summit

Leadership Event Attracts Nearly 100 Supply Chain Leaders From Health Care Systems Nationwide

IRVING, TX--(Marketwire - October 25, 2010) -  VHA Inc., the national health care network, anticipates hosting nearly 100 supply chain executives from health systems across the nation, representing VHA regional supply networks at its first ever VHA SupplyNetworks™ Executive Summit, Oct. 27-29, at the Hilton Dallas at Southlake Town Square, Southlake, Texas.

Designed to promote peer-to-peer information sharing, the member-focused event will examine the latest innovative strategies and best practices that accelerate network savings and showcase the specific successes of VHA SupplyNetworks. The highly participatory program will include panel discussions, round tables and case studies and will feature remarks from leaders at VHA, Novation and VHA member organizations. 

"We find that both the savings and operational efficiencies we have realized from belonging to the Upper Midwest Consolidated Service Center have made an enormous difference in helping us maintain a healthier bottom line, despite today's difficult environment," said Kris Peterson, director, Supply Chain and Support Service, CentraCare Health System, St. Cloud, Minn. "The Summit promises to provide additional ideas about how to improve our network's performance." 

VHA members are joining regional VHA SupplyNetworks to aggregate their spending, reduce their supply chain costs and increase their operational efficiencies beyond what they could achieve individually. On average, members annually save between 8% and 12% through network contracts. Participants in VHA's 25+ regional supply networks act as single entities to gain control of their supply chain by leveraging the power of economies of scale.

Through VHA SupplyNetworks, members:

  • Accelerate supply savings through commitment and aggregation
  • Reduce costs through network participation, operational consolidation and shared resources
  • Maintain control over the targeted areas for supply savings
  • Take advantage of VHA's expertise in the formation and facilitation of networks
  • Establish peer-to-peer connections to rapidly apply best practices and drive innovation

While members retain the ability to make independent decisions about product purchases, they agree as a group to aggressively pursue product standardization whenever possible.

"Hospitals are being squeezed from every direction and at the same time they are being held accountable for doing more than ever before for their patients, so they have to look ways to reduce costs without reducing staff," said Taylor White, senior vice president, VHA SupplyNetworks. "Not only do they offer members the opportunity to reduce costs through aggregated volume and identify and promote opportunities for standardization, VHA supply networks also promote operational efficiencies that are unique to the health care industry."

In their most mature form, VHA SupplyNetworks enable members to pursue higher value activities, such as centralized ordering and centralized logistics. VHA Supply Networks also provide innovative platforms for product utilization discussions because the collective expertise of the network members enables the hospitals to reach a clinically supportable consensus about which medical products to buy.

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, through its 16 regional offices, VHA serves 1,400 hospitals and more than 30,000 non-acute care providers nationwide. VHA was ranked by Modern Healthcare as the 38th best place to work in health care in 2010.

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