Oracle Cerner addresses 'unknown queue' issue that caused harm to 148 veterans at the VA

Oracle's executive vice president sent a letter to VA leaders stating the company is examining its EHR system, including a feature that caused referral orders to effectively go missing at the Department of Veterans Affairs. 

Four things to know:

  1. Kenneth Glueck, executive vice president of Oracle, in a letter addressed to Rep. Frank Mrvan, chair, and Rep. Matt Rosendale, ranking member of the VA House subcommittee charged with oversight of the Oracle Cerner EHR rollout, said the company is doing a "thorough analysis" of the system.

  2. The letter comes after a draft report from a federal watchdog found that the Oracle Cerner system at Spokane, Wash.-based Mann-Grandstaff Medical Center had caused harm to at least 148 veterans and that the company knew about the alleged "flaw" in the system.

  3. The draft report also identified 60 different safety problems related to Cerner's system and identified the "unknown queue" issue as a top priority.

  4. In the letter, Mr. Glueck claims the officials from the VA and the Defense Department decided in January 2020 to use the feature that caused the missing orders. This claim contradicts the draft report from the VA's Office of Inspector General. 

"We are of course continuing to examine innovative ways to make this workflow better," Mr. Glueck wrote in the letter. "We are committed to full transparency and look forward to continuing to work with you to ensure Oracle Cerner's EHRM contract with VA meets or exceeds all expectations."

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