VA Dedicated To Both Vets' And Private Sector's HIT Advancement

Diana Manos | Healthcare IT News | March 4, 2013

Most people in the healthcare arena know that the Veterans Health Administration is the Big Kahuna when it comes to IT–always on the cutting edge of something involving electronic health records. But some may not be aware of how dedicated the VA is to helping the private sector advance, as well.

At a Monday morning lecture, “The Current and Future State of Health Information for Veterans Health Administration,” at the 2013 HIMSS Annual Conference & Exhibition, Theresa Cullen, MD, director of health informatics at the Interagency Program Office, said the mission of the VA is to care–for life–for those who serve and those who have served. Yet, her speech was peppered with the many examples of how the VA wants to lead the private sector forward, while caring for veterans.

Cullen, a practicing emergency physician, says she is motivated to be a physician because of the healing touch she can provide at the bedside. “The way I touch people is by actually touching them,” she says. She believes touch at the bedside provides solace, but so does IT. “And that’s really why we’re all doing this,” she adds...