Vendor Ethics

The Catholic Health Association of the United States
Vendor Ethical Expectations

This document provides information and sets expectations for vendors who work with CHA.  It is not a Code of Conduct, which each vendor should have covering its own standards of behavior. Rather, this document lays out ethical expectations that a vendor entering into an arrangement with CHA should accept and verify as consistent with its established means of conducting business. This document also provides information about how a vendor can report questionable behavior regarding CHA. 

  • Ethical Business Transactions
    CHA expects its vendors to engage in behavior that is legal, honest, fair and conducted with the highest degree of professional integrity. 
  • Vendor Code of Conduct
    CHA encourages each vendor with which it does business to have a Code of Conduct which governs its standards of ethical behavior.  CHA reserves the right to request from each vendor a current copy of such Code.
  • Commitment to Quality
    CHA is committed to providing the highest possible quality of products and services. Our association purchases products and services from vendors on the basis of best value, taking into account factors such as competitive cost and overall quality of products and services delivered.Vendors working for CHA are expected to have an explicit commitment to quality, and to deliver with consistently high levels of performance. We expect vendors to warranty their products and services and act in a professionally accountable manner to rectify any shortcomings.

    CHA hopes to maintain long-lasting relationships with vendors who provide excellent products and services at competitive prices.  As responsible stewards of our resources, however, we may on a periodic basis reexamine our options to make sure CHA is receiving the best value on our investments. Therefore, our established vendors should expect CHA to periodically re-bid contracts. Vendors should not take this as a sign of infidelity or interpret it as a failing to appreciate previous performance; rather, they should be prepared at any time to revalidate their value-add to CHA.

  • Fair Profits and Competitive Markets
    CHA understands and respects the need for businesses to make fair profits, and we appreciate the advantages of being consumers in a free and open competitive marketplace. At the same time, we believe that profits should not be earned through the exploitation of workers or through degradation of the environment. In our business dealings, while we will always be cost-conscious stewards of our resources, we will not be compelled to exclusively engage the low bidder.
  • Transparent Dealings and Accountability
    Based upon our core values of Integrity, Respect, Excellence and Stewardship, CHA is committed to having business dealings that are open and honest, and demonstrably fair.  We desire our business dealings with vendors to be fully transparent, making clear what is covered by a vendor's charges, what we are purchasing, and to whom our payments are going. 
  • Conflict of Interest
    CHA expects its vendors to make every effort to avoid creating conflict of interest situations for our employees. We also expect our vendors to avoid, in all possible circumstances, placing themselves in conflict of interest situations regarding CHA.

    In the event that a vendor discovers or becomes involved in a conflict of interest between CHA and any other party, we expect immediate, full and honest disclosure about the conflict. 
    Under CHA's Standards of Conduct, CHA employees are to exercise good judgment when accepting nominal gratuities that are initiated by a vendor and are meant to be a normal extension of a business relationship (such as meals with a vendor representative, advertising or collateral materials - pens, mugs, hats, food, etc.)  In general, CHA employees should not accept gratuities from a vendor with a value in excess of $100 per year.
  • Inclusiveness, Diversity and Respect
    CHA supports inclusiveness, diversity and universal respect for all people. Accordingly, CHA does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, age, disability, gender, marital status or any other legally protected class. We expect vendors to which we give our business to share our organization's regard for non-discrimination, inclusiveness and diversity, and to show professional respect to all people in their business dealings.
  • Confidential, Sensitive and Proprietary Information
    In the course of business, vendors working with CHA may see, hear or come into possession of information that is confidential, sensitive or proprietary to CHA. Unless specifically informed otherwise, vendors must assume that such information is confidential, sensitive and proprietary to CHA.  Vendors may not share this information with or disseminate it to anyone else outside CHA. If such information is in the possession of vendors, vendors must take all due care to protect the information from disclosure or dissemination to other persons or organizations, within the bounds of the law.

    Vendors with questions or concerns regarding this document should contact CHA's compliance officer, Catherine A. Hurley, at (202) 721-6319 or by email. Reports of questionable behavior regarding CHA may be made (with the option to remain anonymous) to our hotline with Navex Global/Ethicspoint at (888) 353-5718 or online at

    CHA will not tolerate any retribution or retaliation taken against any individual who has in good faith sought out advice or has reported questionable behavior.