Indian Health Service Solving e-Health Challenges With Help From VA

Sean McCalley | Federal News Radio | October 8, 2012

The Indian Health Service's electronic health records system is getting an upgrade. And it's following the same joint EHR plan as the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Defense Department.

"The IHS has had a very long collaborative process with the Veterans Administration," said Howard Hays, the acting chief information officer of IHS, on Federal News Radio's Agency of the Month show. "Our health information system at IHS is in large part based on the VA's system. We've been very fortunate over the years to leverage the VA development in the VistA system to provide the core functionality for [our resource patient management system] (RPMS)."

The Indian Health Service will appropriate the tools used by the VA to apply to its RPMS throughout the country. The trick is finding the resources and applying those best practices to federal offices that sometimes aren't equipped with modern Internet access.