VA Seeks 7 Percent IT Budget Boost, Passes on Defense Health Record Hosting

Bob Brewin | Nextgov | February 13, 2012

After two years without an increase, the Veterans Affairs Department requested a $3.37 billion information technology budget in 2013, up $216 million, or slightly less than 7 percent, from $3.11 billion in 2012. Just over $2 billion or 62 percent of that budget would be devoted to health care systems deployed to 152 department hospitals.

VA's request includes $169 million to develop an integrated electronic health record system with Defense, a plan announced by the two departments in March 2011. This is a 75 percent jump from the $43 million included in the 2012 joint health record budget.

VA also requested $52.9 million for another joint project with the Defense Department, the Virtual Lifetime Electronic Record, which will cover service members and veterans from the time they enlist until they are buried in a VA cemetery. The program's 2012 budget is $66.3 million...