DoD EHR Selection, Interoperability With VA In Omnibus Bill

Kyle Murphy | EHR Intelligence | December 12, 2014

Omnibus bill places requirements on the DoD and VA concerning their EHR selection, optimization, and interoperability projects.

As part of the Omnibus Appropriations bill, the federal government has set goals for the Departments of Defense (DoD) and Veterans Affairs (VA) around the former’s EHR selection process and its work with the latter to achieve interagency interoperability with the VistA EHR.

Under Title VI of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015, the Defense Health Program will receive more than $32 billion provided that the DoD meets certain expectations, one of which concerns Defense Healthcare Management Systems Modernization (DHMSM) — that is, the department’s efforts to modernize its EHR technology.

The fiscal 2015 federal appropriations budget also includes requires the VA to report to Congress concerning improvements to the Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture (VistA) — the department’s homegrown EHR and one which its leadership hoped would be selected by the DoD in order to make interoperability between the two health systems a simpler endeavor.

In total, the bill requires the DoD to submit a plan to Congress containing six components:

(1) the status of the final request for proposal for DHMSM and how the program office used comments received from industry from draft requests for proposal to refine the final request for proposal;

(2) any changes to the deployment timeline, including benchmarks, for full operating capability;

(3) any refinements to the cost estimate for full operating capability and the total life cycle cost of the project...