Sharing international experience: Is implementing the VA's electronic health record system an option for the NHS?

Event Details
July 5, 2012 - 2:15pm - 4:30pm
Nuffield Trust
59 New Cavendish Street
United Kingdom

This roundtable will focus on sharing international experiences of using the VistA system and considering whether or not VistA might be an effective option for the NHS.

In the 1990s, the Veterans' Health Administration (VHA), part of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), was transformed into one of the world's highest performing health care systems. Along with strong leadership and a focus on primary and preventive care, this transformation was helped by the use of a comprehensive electronic health record system, VistA.

VistA, an information system with several million users, was developed by doctors working for the VHA, and it spans primary care, secondary care and social care. Since the VHA doctors were employees of the Federal Government, all of their work is in the public domain and the system has become open-source.

This means that the entire VistA system can be downloaded, used and adapted by other health care systems entirely free of charge. For example, the National Health System of Jordan is currently implementing VistA in all hospitals and GP practices across the country.

At the seminar delegates will have the opportunity to:

  • Increase their understanding of VistA and its potential challenges and benefits;
  • Learn from international experience of implementing VistA, including a case study from Jordan;
  • Consider whether they think it is feasible and/ or desirable to encourage the use of VistA in the NHS.

We are delighted to welcome speakers including:

  • Joseph Dal Molin, President, E-cology Corporation and Chairman, WorldVistA who will join us via video link to discuss implementing VistA in Jordan;
  • Dr Geraint Lewis, Senior Fellow, Nuffield Trust, who will join us via video link, on understanding the VistA electronic health record system;
  • Dr Tony Shannon, Consultant in Emergency Medicine, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust will raise practical considerations for implementing VistA in the NHS.

The seminar will be chaired by Dr Jennifer Dixon, Director, Nuffield Trust.