Premier honors healthcare system, contracted supplier for efforts to promote diversity in supply chain process

CHARLOTTE, NC (June 27, 2006) — The Premier Inc. healthcare alliance has named SSM Health Care and Phoenix Textile Corp., both of St. Louis, Mo., as winners of the 2006 Premier Diversity Recognition Award for efforts to promote the use of minority, women, veteran and small businesses.

One of the largest group purchasing organizations in the country, Premier is committed to the growth and success of diversity suppliers. As part of its best-in-class supplier diversity initiatives, Premier’s Supplier Diversity Committee established the annual award to recognize a member hospital and a contracted supplier for efforts to purchase goods and services from Premier contracted diverse suppliers and to develop procurement strategies to align with the communities served.

The award is presented at Premier’s annual Breakthroughs Conference and Exhibition, which drew approximately 3,000 healthcare system and supplier attendees to Orlando from June 20-23 this year.

Harriet Michel, president of the National Minority Supplier Development Council, was on hand to announce the award winners, along with Susan DeVore, president of Premier Purchasing Partners.

“It’s important for everyone in healthcare that we have a robust community of diverse suppliers serving our industry,” DeVore said. “Competition helps hold down the cost of healthcare supplies, so doing business with diverse suppliers is not only the right thing to do, it’s good for business and for patients.”

The member award identifies Premier member hospitals and health systems that have established active programs to evaluate and support minority, women-owned, and veteran-owned contracted suppliers available through the Premier contract portfolio. The award considers members that have established programs to encourage the development of diverse suppliers in their own community.

“This award is yet another confirmation that we are moving in the right direction with our diversity strategic goals,” said Yvonne Tisdel, SSM Corporate Vice President for Human Resources and System Diversity. “It is because of the commitment of SSM leadership that we are able to make a difference.”

Six other Premier members received honorable mentions for their programs to support supplier diversity: Children’s Hospital, Columbus, Ohio; Detroit Medical Center; Henry Ford Health System, Detroit; North Broward Hospital, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; TriHealth, Inc., Cincinnati; and Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tenn.

The supplier award for diversity recognizes Premier contracted supplier that support our efforts to increase purchases from diversity suppliers and provide economic development opportunities for communities throughout the US.
Premier contracted suppliers receiving honorable mentions include American Medical Depot, Opa Locka, Fla.; Coffee, Tea and Me, Woodbridge, Ill.; Kerma Medical Products, Portsmouth, Va.; LSL Industries, Chicago; Medgluv, Inc., Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; Pharmed Group Corp., Miami; and Print Media, Miami.

“All of these organizations realize the value of this initiative and its positive impact,” said Gleatha Glispie, national director of Premier’s supplier diversity initiative. “Each has recognized and embraced supplier diversity as an essential strategy for managing product costs and creating fair market conditions for all. Access to diversity suppliers expands choice and strengthens the availability of quality products.”

As of April 2006, Premier has 210 diversity suppliers: 29 minority business enterprises with total purchases of $41 million; 15 women business enterprises, $7.6 million in purchases; 164 small business enterprises, $790 million in purchases; and two veteran-owned businesses, a recently added classification, $310,000.

About Premier, Inc.
Premier, Inc., the leader in helping hospitals accelerate performance on both clinical outcomes and supply chain costs, is a healthcare alliance entirely owned by more than 200 of the nation’s leading not-for-profit hospitals and healthcare systems. These organizations operate or are affiliated with nearly 1,500 hospitals and more than 38,500 other healthcare sites. Premier Purchasing Partners provides an array of services supporting health services delivery including group purchasing totaling more than $25 billion annually in supplies and equipment purchasing, as well as supply chain and clinical performance improvement services. Premier Healthcare Informatics offers performance measurement, benchmarking, and reporting products and advisory services supporting quality improvement. Premier Insurance Management Services helps hospitals manage insurance costs and improve risk management and claims capabilities. Headquartered in San Diego, Premier has offices in Charlotte, NC, and Washington, DC. For more information, visit

Hunter Kome, Premier Inc.
704.733.5698 or