AmeriNet signs flurry of new purchasing deals

March 15, 2000

AmeriNet, a membership-based healthcare group purchasing organization representing 1914 hospitals across the U.S., has entered into agreements in the last few months with diagnostic imaging and medical equipment companies Instrumentarium Imaging,

AmeriNet, a membership-based healthcare group purchasing organization representing 1914 hospitals across the U.S., has entered into agreements in the last few months with diagnostic imaging and medical equipment companies Instrumentarium Imaging, Siemens, Masimo, and Dade Behring.

Under separate contracts with each supplier, AmeriNet will provide to its members mammography imaging systems from Instrumentarium, cardiac catheterization lab and vascular lab equipment from Siemens, signal extraction pulse oximetry technology from Masimo, and laboratory equipment from Dade Behring.

New technology and expired contracts have allowed AmeriNet to enter into these agreements, said John Sutton, the company’s senior contract manager.

“Sometimes technology changes, so you need a contract to address that particular state of the art (technology). Other contracts have reached an expiration date,” he said.

The AmeriNet contract adds another GPO to Finland-based Instrumentarium’s roster. Currently, the company sells its imaging equipment to InSource Health Services, the VA, Magnet, and Shared Services Health Care.

“We are spreading our wings by having other people sell our equipment,” said Christopher J. Rohde, Instrumentarium’s marketing director.

This is the first time Instrumentarium will provide its mammography equipment to AmeriNet.

AmeriNet will sell Instrumentarium’s Alpha IQ system, which uses film, and Delta 16 systems, which use digital imaging, to AmeriNet members. AmeriNet also provides mammography equipment from Trex Medical’s Lorad and Bennett divisions. Trex is a Danbury, CT, company that manufactures x-ray equipment.

“We look at the leading-edge technology from the perspective of how this can help our members move into the world of digital technology. This will basically be a filmless society,” he said.

The contract is estimated to net $3.5 million—although it could be as much as 25% more—in sales volume for Instrumentarium in the first year of the three-year contract, Sutton said.

“Instrumentarium Imaging is new to us. They are growing rapidly. They have a lot of room and opportunity to grow with our help and our membership,” Sutton said.

Illinois-based Dade Behring’s six-year agreement with AmeriNet is worth more than $750 million in purchases of cardiac, chemistry, immunochemistry, Syva drug monitoring, plasma protein, hemostasis, and microbiology laboratory diagnostics. Masimo will provide AmeriNet with the company’s pulse oximeters. Oximetry determines oxygen saturation of arterial blood by bichromate photoelectric colorimetry.

AmeriNet’s contract with Siemens is a discount program for equipment purchases that goes into effect when specific types and brands of equipment are available. The six-month contract, which began in January, is estimated to be worth $10 million in sales, said Sutton.

Equipment covered under the contract includes Siemens’ Coroskop Plus/Hicor with angioplasty package, Bicor Plus/ Hicor, Angiostar Plus, and Multistar Plus, Coroskop EP, Bicor EP, Coroskop Swing Lab, and Acom.Net. AmeriNet already has a long-term agreement with Siemens for other medical equipment.

Founded in 1996, AmeriNet operates through its three shareholder healthcare organizations—AmeriNet Central, Intermountain Health Care, and Vector. AmeriNet has nearly 12,000 member facilities across the U.S., including hospitals, medical group practices, nursing homes, surgery centers, managed-care organizations, pharmacies, and integrated delivery networks.

In a related development, InSource Health Services, a competitor of AmeriNet, has signed a five-year exclusive contract with Eastman Kodak. Kodak will provide medical imaging films, laser imaging films, film for oncology imaging, and mammography film to InSource Health Service’s 5000 members.