The Human Side of Developing Integrated Electronic Health Records

Bob Brewin | NextGov | July 6, 2012

As the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments work to develop an integrated electronichealth record the concept is simple—streamline the military health care system for active-duty service members, veterans and retirees—but getting there is not. The two departments will not deploy the system until 2017, eight years after President Obama kicked off the project in April 2009.

The interagency program office managing the iEHR wasn’t set up until October 2011, and its director wasn’t appointed until April 2012. That gives VA and the Pentagon five years to develop what Defense Secretary Leon Panetta dubbed the world’s largest electronic health record system, which would serve 9.7 million active-duty and retired military personnel and their families, and 7.8 million veterans.