A newly formed partnership will provide alternatives for hospitals and institutions wanting to leverage the benefits of e-commerce. Neoforma.com Inc. -- provider of business-to-business e-commerce in medical equipment and supplies -- has chosen the Ariba Inc. B2B Commerce Platform to deliver a hosted e-commerce solution designed for the healthcare industry. The marketplace will enable buyers to locate and purchase medical products. It also will offer suppliers access to new customers and markets. "The changes we are making to the healthcare supply chain will benefit healthcare professionals by significantly reducing the time and effort required to identify and purchase products and supplies," says B.D. Goel, executive vice president of products and services at Neoforma.com. Under the channel partner agreement, the Ariba platform will be integrated with the Neoforma.com Medical Marketplace, an online medical equipment and products marketplace. The agreement "will enable us to deliver customized solutions to trading partners within the healthcare industry's supply chain according to their preferences and needs," says Neoforma.com president/CEO Bob Zollars. The alliance will, the firm believes, help buyers, suppliers and others using Medical Marketplace to cut time and costs.