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Defense, VA choose e-health record graphical user interface

The Defense and Veterans Affairs departments have selected a key component of the their joint electronic health record -- the graphical user interface, which clinicians will use to access records and radiological imagery, Roger Baker, VA's chief information officer, told a press briefing Friday.

Baker said the GUI was developed at the Tripler Army Medical Center and the co-located VA Medical Center in Honolulu. He said it allows clinicians to view information drawn from the Defense AHLTA electronic record and VA's Systems and Technology Architecture (VistA) system as "a single medical record."

The GUI will also allow clinicians to pull and view medical imagery data from the two systems, said Baker, who called the GUI "production quality." He said the GUI will be installed at the North Chicago joint Navy-VA medical center later this year.

Baker provided few details on the GUI, but well-informed Defense and VA sources told NextGov the joint electronic health record GUI, called Janus, was developed by the Pacific Telehealth and Technology Hui (which means association, society or community in the Hawaiian language), a joint Defense-VA health technology venture established in 1999 and based at Tripler.

The Hui started development of Janus in 2003 and it allows clinicians a shared view of data pulled from VistA and the Defense Composite Health Care System, a key component of AHLTA, which includes pharmacy, radiology and laboratory modules, as well as patient scheduling systems.

The Web-based Janus GUI collates and combines all VA and Defense data onto a single screen, including lab and pharmacy information from both systems. The latest version of Janus also features a Web interface, which accesses and displays medical imagery from both systems.

Asked if other GUIs were under consideration for the joint electronic record, Baker said, the Tripler GUI was the "mainline" interface.

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