A Message from our CEO

To say 2020 was challenging is beyond an understatement. I continue to stand in awe of our membership and could not be prouder to see everyone working tirelessly to keep staff protected as they cared for those sickened in the pandemic. We are proud to report that even with all 2020 dropped on us, 2020 was another successful year for Capstone Health Alliance. We continue to set standards for savings impact and have continued to provide best in class service to our members – virtually or in person. We are proud of what we achieved with the support of our membership and Premier, Inc. I hope you enjoy this short video highlighting our accomplishments in 2020. Thank you for all that you do. We stand by you and together we are #capstonestrong.

Tim Bugg
President & CEO

2020 Highlights


Contracts in Portfolio






Contracts Signed


Supply Spend


Impact across Capstone Membership


Of total contracts in portfolio






Contract Categories


Savings/ Value since 2003

Capstone Is...

300 Hospitals representing more than 140 Health Systems across 23 States. We have over 37,000 licensed beds across our acute care membership.

Beyond healthcare, Capstone also represents over 25,000 non-acute and business & industry members.

Our members make up a total of $7.0 Billion of Premier Contract Spend and $10.0 Billion in total Supply Chain Spend

In 2020, our members realized a 25:1 Return on Investment.

Our 2020 Contracting Strategy

committee meetings for concise and timely communication and education.

our members by serving as a trusted resource and providing unbiased financial analysis and clinical documentation.

with reputable suppliers to deliver not only cost savings but unsurpassed service and support to all members, regardless of size or geographic location.

 In 2020, we hosted the first State of the Alliance for our supplier partners.

education opportunities, utilization trends and share best practices to help our members be more effective and efficient.

with relevant associations and industry experts to gather valuable information to guide and assist our members in their cost, quality, and outcomes improvement initiatives.

cost savings and value to our members by negotiating preferred pricing agreements in recognition of our aggregate spend. Members have access to a comprehensive portfolio of products and services while maintaining purchasing autonomy.

Supplier Partners

On December 10th, 2020 we hosted our first State of the Alliance for our supplier partners. The agenda included an overview of alliance updates and lessons from five healthcare supply chain leaders on what hospital supply chain leaders are experiencing in the midst of a pandemic including speakers from St. Joe’s/ Candler, Catawba Valley Healthcare, The Carle Foundation, Commonwealth Health and The University of Tennessee Medical Center. We concluded the event highlighting how Capstone is helping our members and supplier partners remain strong throughout the pandemic. 

Carle Foundation
University of Tennessee
CHC Commonwealth Health Corporation
Catawba Valley Medical Center
St Joseph's Candler

Member Collaboration

2020 was a challenging year for everyone. Capstone stepped up beside our members in support of the work being done throughout the pandemic. Our communication methods for 2020 were greatly influenced by the pandemic response.

Virtual Regional Town Hall meetings

Capstone facilitated virtual gatherings of Capstone membership and Capstone staff to allow members to stay safe, stay connected, stay informed and discuss COVID-related challenges in a safe and confidential environment. 

13 meetings were held in August and September with greater than 50 members participating. Capstone facilitated the Town Hall meeting to allow members to have open and honest discussions concerning product shortages (primarily Personal Protective Equipment – PPE) and best practices. Some of the feedback shared from our members in these Town Halls are below.

  • Challenges in obtaining PPE were widespread and varies by product on a weekly and sometimes daily basis.

  • Members were unsure of the best sources for products in vetting non traditional suppliers when products through traditional suppliers were exhausted

  • Members were unsure of the best sources of guidelines for use of product from non-traditional sources including modifications to fit test requirements for N-95’s, acceptable ingredients/dry times for surface sanitizers and procedures for reprocessing of 95’s.

  • Members benefit from the ability to share challenges as well as success stories between health systems.

  • Members benefit from a buy/sell/trade type platform for PPE needs or excess PPE available for sale or trade.

In addition to the Virtual Town Hall Meetings, the Capstone contract team stepped up to vet non-traditional suppliers and aid members with urgent PPE needs.

Committees and Councils Highlights

2020 proved to be a challenging year to conduct committee and council meetings due to the focus of member hospitals on meeting day to day challenges associated with supply shortages, hospital beds at capacity, and staffing shortages related to illness or quarantine. Capstone committee and council leaders remained considerate throughout the year of the priorities of the members but successfully conducted meetings as appropriate. 

Member-led councils are facilitated by the contracting team, are comprised of select members and provide direction on all contracting decisions.

Contracting Councils are facilitated by the Contracting team, are comprised of select members and provide direction on all contracting decisions.
  • Supply Chain Leadership Council

    Beginning in May, the entire Capstone Executive Team and contracting leadership participated in weekly meetings with Capstone’s Supply Chain Leadership Council. During these meetings, the Capstone team heard first hand from seasoned supply chain leaders of the dire challenges being faced by member hospitals. The challenges associated with backorders and product availability changed weekly.

  • Contract Oversight Council

    Provided direction on contracting strategies following the Premier contract calendar.

  • Purchased Services Oversight Council

    Developed strategies for service agreements and related initiatives.

Education Councils are facilitated by the Member Services team, are comprised of select members and provide direction on all education initiatives.
  • Capstone Education Council

    Provided input and direction for courses and content launched in the Capstone Learning Academy and had oversight for the newly launched Capstone Leadership Institute.

In addition to the councils, the contracting team led various service line Member-Driven Committees that convene on a regular basis for contract updates and educational sessions. All members are invited and encouraged to have one or multiple participants at the committee meetings. Meetings were held when possible in consideration

The Committee reviewed new contract opportunities for various categories in 2020, including document shredding, general orthopedic trauma products and skin integrity products The Committee also highlighted members in various regions to encourage member networking and engagement.

Committee members were provided with contract updates in a variety of categories including Physician Preference Card Cleanup and Ophthalmology products. Committee members were also provided Continuing Education on topics including Preventing OR Complications and the Proper Care, Handling, and Processing of Endoscopes.

The Committee met to discuss the new normal of navigating supply chain and value analysis as well as topics related to the pandemic including reusable products and procurement of personal protective equipment.

The 2020 Laboratory Committee focused on COVID-19 related support providing members supplier updates on testing options, manufacturing delays, and communicating ever changing market conditions on various other lab related shortages. Quarterly lab committee meetings and newsletters provided our member lab leaders with opportunities to participate in best sharing practices, supplier education sessions, and valuable contract launch information and communicating the latest information on COVID-19 testing available in the Laboratory Testing Workbook resource. 

As the contracting process for laboratory agreements is managed by the Capstone Contract Oversight Council (COC), 5 contract categories were reviewed, resulting in agreements or enhancements launched. In addition to the committee meetings, newsletters and contracting process, the Capstone team focused on heightened engagement with our lab leaders across the membership, working with our Region Managers to offer individual member lab portfolio sessions to identify opportunities for savings and contract uptake.

In 2020 the Pharmacy Committee addressed issues associated with managing and treating COVID-19 patients, addressing drug supply chain and shortage issues, handling and storage of COVID-19 vaccines, blood/plasma supply issues, 503B compounding, flu vaccines, and specialty & biosimilar drugs. Communications with our members included weekly email updates with the latest Capstone agreements & amendments, Premier product additions, deletions and price changes; quarterly pharmacy work group webinars, and periodic webinars to detail specific new contracts or complex communications. 

Our goal for 2021 is to continue to build our pharmacy contract portfolio to include branded, generic and biosimilar opportunities. We are also sharing information with Capstone Health Alliance members, to assure they are billing correctly for all COVID-19 drugs and vaccines, in order to receive reimbursement and comply with CMS guidelines.

Data Services

In support of our members, our data services team places great emphasis on providing accurate and timely data. Capstone’s team of data analysts are pull from a variety of experiences in their advanced data analytics capabilities.

In 2020, our Data Services team provided a variety of data points to our members including financial impact statements for new agreements based on each member’s individual spend, as well as a view of the overall impact to our alliance. As product shortages continued throughout the year, our team consistently cross referenced reports to provide financial analysis of product alternatives. The team also conducted market basket reviews ensuring that Capstone members were accessing the correct pricing.


Potential Member Market Baskets


Pharmacy Impact Statements


Contract Oversight Council Impact Statements




Member Scorecards


Total Savings and Value


Savings/Value of New Contracts Signed in 2020


Historical Savings/ Value since 2003


Premier Spend


Price Activations Managed on behalf of our Members

Field Services

Capstone’s field services team team typically spends time in our member facilities assisting with projects and cost savings opportunities. In 2020, this approach moved to a virtual and telephonic environment as we supported and served members when and as needed. The field team continued to be a valuable resource to our hospital members supporting in several areas including assistance with identified potential cost savings, price activation assistance, and price discrepancy resolution. 

Given the pandemic and the toll it took on our membership, the field team supported the membership and met virtually with hospital members in Supply Chain, Pharmacy, and Lab to discuss opportunities and assist with challenges.

Serves as lead on implementation for new members. 

Conducts regular business reviews to convey contract utilization, identifies savings, and estimates financial impact for new agreements.

Serves as a liaison between members and vendors to ensure that accurate pricing was in place. The team informs
members of new agreements and managed price activations.

Supports members by serving as a dedicated resource for our membership for all initiatives, serves as supply chain subject matter experts for the Capstone membership and provides support on Premier tools and initiatives

Member Services

Capstone Member Services provides exceptional focus to our members by identifying and implementing improvements and expansions of service programs to provide additional value to our members. We do this through our 3 Core Foundations of education, recognition, and member feedback.


Launched in 2017, the Capstone Learning Academy is an online learning portal housing sustained educational topics to keep our members updated on industry trends, terms and best practices. Educational topics continue to be available to all Capstone members at no cost.

The Capstone Education Council developed course structure, content creation, and developed the application process. The Council reviewed applications and a class of 16 Capstone members were selected to be the Capstone Leadership Institute’s Inaugural Class of 2020.

The inaugural class of the Capstone Leadership Institute started courses in January 2020. A class of 16 students, graduated in 2020 with a Distinction of Advancement in Healthcare Leadership. Applications and nominations opened for the 2021 class in November, 2020 and 21 students have been selected via applications for the 2021 class.

Member Recognition

Virtual Graduation
Virtual Graduation
Valedictorian Angie Miller
2020 Capstone Leadership Institute Valedictorian Angie Miller

Member Feedback

2020 Annual Survey

Capstone’s Annual Membership Survey, coupled with individual and group facilitated conversations allowed us to identify not only what was working well but also to uncover opportunities for development. Given the challenges faced in 2020, we are proud that our members took the time to provide feedback. 

Many of the initiatives that Capstone implements are based on member feedback. Our MEMBERS shared, we listened and as a result our annual member survey reflects continued member satisfaction.

Staff Interactions, Support & Responsiveness
Membership Dues/ROI
Opportunity to Provide Feedback
Meeting Content

Partnerships in our Community

Capstone in the Community

One of our core foundations is to collaborate. We do this by connecting our members and asking for strategic direction. We also  collaborate locally by giving back to our community. We partner with a variety of organizations listed below.

United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County
Council of Aging of Buncombe County
Montreat College
Western Carolina Medical Society
Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce
The Chamber

Strategic Partnerships



Capstone Health Alliance partnered with DeRoyal Industries Inc., a global medical manufacturer, and Premier Inc., a leading performance improvement company, to create a new joint venture, DePre, dedicated to the domestic production of isolation gowns. A new entrant in the market, the joint venture will produce isolation gowns in an existing facility outside Knoxville, TN. Raw materials will be sourced from U.S.-based manufacturers, with backup capacity from Mexico and South America. 


In this unique collaboration, gowns are designed to specifications considering Capstone Health Alliance’s care delivery requirements, while also allowing for fully automated production that can scale over time. Capstone Health Alliance also entered into a multi-year commitment to purchase a portion of our annual isolation gowns from the joint venture.

North Carolina Healthcare Association

North Carolina Healthcare Association Strategic Partners

In 2020, we announced a new partnership with North Carolina Healthcare Association Strategic Partners (NCHASP), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the North Carolina Healthcare Association (NCHA). The partnership will provide members of both

organizations access to strategic agreements and an array of business partners.

NCHA Strategic Partners Senior Vice President Jody Fleming said, “NCHA Strategic Partners has worked closely with Capstone for two decades. NCHA Strategic Partners and Capstone will be combining segments of our portfolios, bringing more robust offerings for our respective members.”

Our Response to the Pandemic

2020 was a year of challenges and our team stood beside our members and supported their efforts in a variety of ways.

  • Supplies and N-95 Masks

    Coordination of supplies including N-95 masks and identification of needs with Western Carolina Medical Society

  • Personal Protective Equipment

    Promotion of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to our local Chambers.

  • Glove Shipments

    Arrangement and coordinating glove shipments as requested by hospitals in our membership

  • PPE for the Membership

    Partnering with online marketplace Stockd for securing PPE for the membership

  • Supplier Vetting

    Vetting of hundreds of applications from suppliers offering Personal Protective Equipment to ensure suppliers were reputable and product met quality standards

  • Small and Rural Hospitals

    Cross docking Personal Protective Equipment and coordinating shipping for small and rural hospitals in the membership that could not meet minimum ordering requirements.

  • Capstone Marketplace

    Development of the Capstone Marketplace giving our members a place to buy supplies and sell overstock

  • Town Halls and Group Discussions

    Coordination of multiple town halls and other group discussions providing our members the opportunity to share best practices and learn of emerging market trends.

Thank You

Thank you to our partners, all our members and the Capstone Health Alliance team.

Together we are #capstonestrong

Tim Bugg
President & CEO