DoD, VA's Health IT Efforts Grow Out Of Leadership, Necessity

Ruben Gomez | Federal News Radio | September 18, 2012

The departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs are preparing to release a new request for proposals under their integrated electronic health records (iEHR) initiative, a move that will represent the latest sign of renewed progress in a complex effort to marry both departments' health IT systems. The RFPs, expected in late October or early November, will support digital clinical capabilities, such as pharmacy services and immunization records, said Barclay Butler, the head of the Interagency Program Office (IPO).

But in a broader context, they also will serve as a reminder that DoD and VA so far have managed to revitalize a floundering effort to modernize how both departments deliver healthcare to service members, veterans and their families. "We are just completing the development of our plans," Butler said. "We are now deploying and developing our infrastructure, and we are working to have our early clinical capabilities competed."