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Michael Gilmore: DoD, VA Health Record Integration Clashes with President Mandate

Michael Gilmore, the Defense Department’s director of operational testing and evaluation, has said the Pentagon’s proposal to buy proprietary software to unify the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments’ health record systems clashes with President Barack Obama’s open standards mandate.

Citing Gilmore’s March 28 memo to Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter, Nextgov reported Monday that the Pentagon official recommended an overhaul to the integrated electronic health record system crafted by the Defense Department and VA in February.

Gilmore urged the Pentagon to first define and evaluate the iEHR architecture before acquiring a software that integrates the Defense’s Armed Forces Health Longitudinal Technology Application to an external environment through open standards, Bob Brewin writes.

“The White House has repeatedly recommended that the Department take an inexpensive and direct approach to implementing the President’s open standards,” Gilmore said in the memo.

The White House, the Defense Department and VA agreed last Dec. 6 to implement an iEHR based on open standards, Nextgov noted.

But the Pentagon’s proposed commercial software is an “expensive, complete replacement that may or may not succeed and that may or may not result in a system that adheres to open standards,” Gilmore told Carter.

Instead, Gilmore pushed to revamp the iEHR project based on a universal health exchange language that supports open standards for all healthcare providers, Brewin reports.

This as the Defense prepares to release request for proposal drafts to purchase non-open standard commercial laboratory, pharmacy and immunization systems for the iEHR, according to the report.

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