VA Is Competing for the Pentagon’s Electronic Health Record Contract

Bob Brewin | Nextgov | March 13, 2014

The Veterans Affairs Department plans to enter its next generation electronic health record into the competition for the Defense Department’s EHR job, VA Secretary Eric Shinseki told a hearing of the House Veterans Affairs Committee Thursday.

VA plans to develop an advanced version of its Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture EHR dubbed VistA Evolution, Shinseki told the hearing. The new software will be equal to commercial software Defense plans to consider for its EHR, Shinseki said in response to a series of questions from Rep. David Roe, R-Tenn. “We want to be in competition for [the] DoD [EHR],” Shinseki said.

VA has released the open source MUMPS – or multi-user multi-programming system – code that powers VistA to commercial developers, another reason to believe there will be little difference between VA and commercial EHRs, Shinseki told the hearing. Alternatively, if Defense develops a software module that meets VA needs, Shinseki said, VA “will go after that.”...