OSEHRA Welcomes Indian Health Service As Newest Collaborative Partner

Press Release | Indian Health Service (IHS), Open Source Electronic Health Record Agent (OSEHRA) | May 15, 2013

Arlington, Virginia – May 14, 2013 - OSEHRA, the Open Source Electronic Health Record Agent, a nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating innovation in electronic health record (EHR) software, announced today that it has entered into a collaborative agreement with the Indian Health Service (IHS) to facilitate the participation of IHS employees in the open source community.  This collaboration adds knowledgeable resources to the OSEHRA Community, and does not involve the transfer of Federal funds or property in lieu of funds, nor receipt of any fees or payment for services.

This collaboration allows IHS to participate with OSEHRA in a wide range of open source software activities to improve the quality and interoperability of EHR and related health information technology (HIT). OSEHRA is the custodial agent for the Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture (VistA) software, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) EHR system.  Because the IHS Resource and Patient Management System (RPMS) derive much of its software from VistA, the IHS will be able to benefit from discussions and design improvements to its source code. This collaboration benefits OSEHRA by engaging a broader stakeholder perspective that can lead to the creation of products that bring even more value to the OSEHRA Open Source Community.

“The IHS and OSEHRA have entered into a collaborative agreement regarding the open source community,” said Dr. Howard Hays, acting Chief Information Officer for the IHS.  “We've worked closely with the VA on health information system development for over 25 years, and we've consumed much of VistA in RPMS. By leveraging what the VA has done we have been able to focus on value added development targeted toward ambulatory care, public and population health. The potential growth of HIT and EHR capabilities through the efforts of an open source community, and the impact of those technologies on health care within and beyond Indian Country, is promising.”

Seong K. Mun, Ph.D., OSEHRA President and CEO, concurs. “The Indian Health Service has been an innovation leader in health IT with special expertise in the ambulatory care environment. This complements well with our work with the VistA community. The inclusion of IHS as an OSEHRA Collaborative Partner is a very significant step to building a robust and vibrant open source community, and is an inspiring demonstration of how the movement towards open government can drive improvements nationally, particularly in healthcare. We look forward to working with IHS to drive improvements in technology that will ultimately result in continued improved outcomes for a critical population.”

About the Indian Health Service

The Indian Health Service (IHS), an agency within the Department of Health and Human Services, is responsible for providing federal health services to American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN). The IHS is the principal federal health care provider and health advocate for AI/AN people, and its goal is to raise their health status to the highest possible level. The IHS provides a comprehensive health service delivery system for AI/AN people who are members of 566 federally recognized tribes across the U.S.


OSEHRA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating innovation in electronic health record software and related technology. Founded in 2011, OSEHRA is a rapidly growing open source community with over 2300 registered members representing 160+ industry, academic, and government organizations. OSEHRA supports an open, collaborative community of users, developers, and researchers engaged in advancing electronic health record software and related health information technology. OSEHRA hosts software repositories for applications such as the Department of Veterans Affairs’ VistA electronic health record.

OSEHRA's mission is to facilitate the improvement and maintenance of EHR information systems using open source best practices. OSEHRA simply and powerfully establishes an organized framework for users, developers, service providers, researchers, universities and for-profit companies to communicate, collaborate, and share. The codebase improvements developed within the collaborative platform are available thru a free Apache 2 license to OSEHRA members in academia, industry and government.

The OSEHRA Corporate Forum includes InterSystems, Inc., DSS (Document Storage Systems), Inc., Medsphere Systems Corporation, Northrop Grumman Corporation, AEGIS.net, Inc., The MITRE Corporation, AssureRx Health, Inc., Oroville Hospital, the Department of Veterans Affairs, Spin Systems, Inc., MedicaSoft, LLC and the Indian Health Service.

Follow us on Twitter at @OSEHRA.
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Aurelia Carr-Olverson
Director, Corporate Communications
[email protected]
(571) 858-3377