Medline has entered into a multi-year prime vendor laboratory partnership with Allina Health. As the primary supplier, Medline will provide an extensive portfolio of laboratory products and solutions to Allina Health’s 15 laboratories across the system’s medical centers, hospitals, physician offices and urgent care facilities.
Allina Health first tapped Medline to support inventory challenges that emerged within its laboratory operations during the pandemic, notably the procurement of critical testing supplies when demand spiked and testing protocols rapidly changed. The two organizations worked to reallocate resources to meet demand, implement cost-saving consolidation initiatives and enhance visibility into order management, pricing and inventory accuracy throughout its supply chain. The prime vendor partnership will help to drive further efficiencies through product standardization and consolidation opportunities across the health system’s laboratory specialties.
“We were seeking a partner that could enable our comprehensive approach to drive efficiencies, implement cost savings and help establish a strong foundation for our laboratory business,” said David Wood, director of strategic sourcing and services for Allina Health. “We are excited to grow our partnership with Medline and explore future operational and capital improvement opportunities together.”
As part of the prime vendor agreement, multiple Medline team members will be dedicated to Allina Health, ensuring supply chain operational transparency and efficiency with a focus on pricing and invoice accuracy, as well as overall KPI improvements. In addition, Allina Health will have the ability to easily monitor key metrics, such as item utilization, contract compliance, price accuracy and spend by product categories, through Medline’s advanced analytics platform. The health system will also leverage Medline’s supply chain optimization solutions to support its laboratory resiliency efforts, including customized third-party logistics (3PL) capabilities to offset on-hand inventory with Medline’s inventory management services and vast warehouse network.
“Our partnership is especially unique because the Allina Health team helps us think differently,” said Megan Schwellenbach, corporate accounts vice president, acute care, for Medline. “The out-of-the-box, innovative ideas will continue to drive significant outcomes. From streamlining processes to integrating more closely with other key vendors to enhancing logistics capabilities, we’re always looking for ways to strengthen our relationship and make healthcare run better.”