Private Hospitals to Gain Access to Vets' Medical Records

Judi Hasson | AOL Government | October 19, 2011

The Department of Veterans Affairs has reached the final stretch of what's been a long effort to employ technology that allows private hospitals access to veterans' medical records that can be used to evaluate health history and deliver better care.

The move is one of many within the VA as it strives to overhaul its image and provide the best care for America's veterans and protect the security of their records. "It is a huge step. We expect to turn that on nationwide in 2012," VA CIO Roger Baker told AOL Government.

Baker said pilot projects for the Virtual Lifetime Electronic Record (VLER) have been ongoing for more than a year, opening the door for private hospitals in 11 cities to gather VA medical information. The hospitals are located in San Diego, Indianapolis, Richmond, Va., Hampton, Va., Spokane, Wash., Moab, Utah, Ashville, N.C., Buffalo, N.Y., Charleston, S.C., Minneapolis and Puget Sound, Wash...