VA’s Cerner decision has HHS Indian Health Service weighing their own EHR options

“… Following an announcement by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that they planned to modernize their EHR, the Veterans Information System and Technical Architecture (VistA), IHS notified Tribes that the VA’s decision will impact the IHS RPMS EHR. Since 1984, the IHS has relied on RPMS as its health information solution. The RPMS is a government-developed health information system comprised of over 80 integrated software applications. The RPMS is VistA at its core, sharing much of the same infrastructure and some clinical applications with the VA. Over time however, the RPMS has evolved, adding many improvements, functions, and interface capabilities that do not exist in VistA. For example, many VA applications, including laboratory and pharmacy, have been extensively modified to meet IHS requirements.

IHS will host two listening sessions to collect comments and feedback regarding IHS’ plan to maintain or change RPMS moving forward…”

G2X TAKE: The impact of the announced VA EHR modernization plans extend beyond VA, to include any organization reliant on the legacy VistA EHR. The HHS Indian Health service RPMS EHR is based on VistA “at its core” and these listening sessions confirm steps IHS leadership is taking to evaluate their options.

While these listening sessions are not geared towards the Federal Health IT and consulting community, expect many firms supporting RPMS to try and find their way onto the call as a way of gauging the current line of thinking. We don’t anticipate any big decisions will happen quickly here, but that won’t stop firms from working to influence the future direction. 

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