There’s a lot of work (and money) going into creating the data systems so medical records can be shared. With many vets receiving care at private practices and those outside the realm of the VA this is an attempt to work and bring all this together into the VLER. In October big contracts were handed out in the millions for the project with the DOD. DOD has to communicate with the VA too. We had other agencies like the Coast Guard that chose another medical record vendor, Epic that will also support the VLER movement. It’s kind of gray yet as to how McKesson fits in here as they have medical records too, so Vista, ALTHA, McKesson or all of the above . As a reminder if you are covered by the VA as a veteran, go get your records for free and see what’s on file today. Microsoft has also automated the process if you want to place your information in HealthVault too. Also too worth noting, MedVirginia also had done some exchanges with Social Security with disability medical records, you that other government agency that has IT infrastructure, unlike Medicare that is pretty much all outsourced. I think that was worth a mention because so many times people just don’t think the government does things right, they do and they make mistakes too but look at what the VA did for medical records. It’s even been created for inexpensive commercial installations. I wonder if the VA will chatting with them soon? Might as well since it’s a Vista created system. By the way, the Social Security Death Index is the #1 reference by government and companies to find out someone is alive, and those pesky MD ratings could use their help. The VA has another iron in the fire too with another project to create a web based version of Vista. They don’t do all their connectivity and imaging and after this acquisition they are in business with these folks too, Picis who before the acquisition by Ingenix already had many hospital installations so it appears this is to be one more area of revenue generation for Ingenix, a wholly owned subsidiary of United Healthcare, and they seem to have their fingers into just about everything today after the big number of acquisitions in 2010. We have to remember to call them OptumSight after today with the name change, same stuff though a company that creates algorithms. So again, if the government stuff is so bad, why is everyone developing it, something to think about. This is the fourth VLER pilot to be put in place for the exchange of records. BD
The Veterans Affairs Department has started a pilot to share patient records between the Richmond VA Medical Center and MedVirginia, a central Virginia health information exchange, which expands the virtual lifetime electronic record (VLER) program. With the VLER program, VA is developing a single electronic system to track the medical, benefits and administrative records of service members from their induction into the military throughout their lives as veterans.