A giant managed care company will be trying to consolidate medical testing with a single vendor.

The United HealthCare Insurance Company unit of UnitedHealth Group Inc., Minnetonka, Minn., has awarded a 10-year contract with a value of about $3 billion to Laboratory Corp. of America Holdings, Burlington, N.C., LabCorp says.

LabCorp will become UnitedHealthcare’s exclusive national laboratory, and it will develop regional networks for UnitedHealthcare to fill in gaps in its own network, LabCorp says.

The deal includes responsibility for the Oxford Health Plans laboratory network in the New York area, the PacifiCare health maintenance organization lab network in Colorado, the Neighborhood Health Partnership lab network in Florida, and the Mid Atlantic Medical Services L.L.C. lab networks in Maryland and Virginia, LabCorp says.

LabCorp already is the exclusive lab services provider for the PacifiCare HMO plans in Arizona, LabCorp says.

LabCorp says it has agreed to pay up to $200 million during the first 3 contract years to cover the cost of building the new lab networks in California, Colorado and the Oxford, Mid Atlantic Medical and Neighborhood Health markets, as well as in California and Colorado.