Veterans Affairs

Issues with VA’s new EHR have contributed to patient harms and one death, watchdog says

Three new reports from VA’s Office of Inspector General detail problems with the pharmacy module and scheduling service of the Oracle Cerner EHR system that made it difficult to reschedule medical appointments and effectively track veterans’ prescriptions.

Biden budget cuts funding for health record refresh amid ongoing program 'reset'

VA’s proposed FY25 budget includes zero funding for future deployments of its new electronic health record system and allocates no additional funds for assessing rollouts at other sites.

Chicago phase of VA's health record software deployment is live amid larger program 'reset'

The rollout of Oracle Cerner EHR software at the Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center is DOD’s final deployment of the new system and a critical test for the future of VA’s modernization efforts.

VA budget bill maintains EHR funding but imposes additional ‘reset’ oversight

The bipartisan FY24 budget package allocates over $1.3 billion for the agency’s new electronic health record system but makes 25% of that funding contingent on enhanced transparency around VA’s ongoing EHR “program reset.”

Lawmakers urge VA to tread carefully with AI

The Department of Veteran Affairs’ 2023 inventory of AI use cases listed 100 instances where VA is working to use emerging technologies, with at least 40 of those examples in an operational phase.

VA pharmacy tech glitches put 250,000 veterans at risk, officials say

Data transmission errors in the VA's new commercial health record could potentially lead to providers missing important prescription information on patients who visit multiple agency facilities.

Contracts featuring automation, built-in security can boost agencies’ cyber defenses, VA officials say

As the federal government looks to harden its cyber resilience, officials from the Department of Veterans Affairs said agencies should work to modernize outdated technologies and ensure that vendor contracts include more rigorous security standards.

Vet centers need better systems, data to enhance support services

Watchdog officials warned lawmakers that the community-based counseling centers for returning veterans use a platform for identifying those at high risk of suicide that is “neither effectively nor consistently utilized.”

VA should establish an AI disclosure process, Republican lawmaker says

Though the Department of Veterans Affairs has already made “admirable” use of artificial intelligence, transparency “has got to be elevated to a top priority,” according to Rep. Matt Rosendale, R-Mont.

At VA, cloud is still emerging tech

The agency's CIO said that "cloud still has huge potential for us." 

VA’s compliance with accessibility requirements still lacking, watchdog says

The Department of Veterans Affairs “did not effectively manage website accessibility to ensure Section 508 compliance,” according to an audit conducted by the department’s Office of Inspector General.

Ongoing ‘reset’ looks to put VA’s EHR deployment back on track

An agency spokesperson said VA is "committed to resuming the system rollout" but performance and productivity goals need to be hit before additional deployments are rescheduled.

Priming the workforce is key to future AI efforts, federal IT leaders say

One agency tech leader is urging IT workers inside government and out to "get into the shallow end of the AI swimming pool" and experiment with the new tools.

Veterans Affairs sheds more light on $14B transformation recompete

The department's main health care agency announces its decision on which companies will be eligible and reveals more on how teams can be structured.

VA creates new monitoring system after glitch affects more than 120,000 veterans’ claims

Officials from the Department of Veterans Affairs said they’re creating a new system to notify officials “within 24 hours” of any issues affecting electronically filed claims.

There’s a ‘big disconnect’ between users and developers of VA’s new EHR, lawmaker says

A 2023 survey of VA employees using the Oracle Cerner electronic health record system found that just 26% did not have issues with system availability.

VA's tech training program will soon expire — lawmakers hope to save it by year's end

Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chair Jon Tester, D-Mont., said he is working with lawmakers to reauthorize VA’s VET-TEC pilot before the end of the year.