Congress unhappy with DoD, VA health records progress

Leo Shane III | Marine Times | April 16, 2014

House lawmakers plan to hold back millions in dollars of technology funding from Defense and Veterans Affairs department planners until Congress is convinced they are making progress on developing a way to share electronic medical records.

At an April 9 hearing, members of the House Appropriations Committee approved a fiscal 2015 budget plan that would hold back 75 percent of VA’s requested record system upgrade funds, contingent on the two departments proving that they are close to a seamless medical record system for troops and veterans.

Rep. John Culberson, R-Texas, chair of the committee’s military construction and veterans affairs panel, said that similar language is planned for the defense appropriations and defense authorization bills set for May. Pentagon planners won’t get their full technology request until lawmakers are satisfied they’re addressing the shared records issue. “If they want their money, they’re going to have to earn it,” he said...