VA health exec who oversaw Cerner EHR modernization program to step down

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Richard Stone, MD, who serves as the acting undersecretary for health at the Veterans Health Administration, is set to step down in mid-July, according to a June 10 report by FedScoop.

The VHA said Dr. Stone will be replaced by someone who has yet to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

In a message to staff on June 10, Dr. Stone said White House officials had informed him he was no longer in the running for the permanent post, the Air Force Times reported.

"I am deeply saddened by this decision but am confident that the great employees of VHA will continue to serve America's veterans with excellence," he said in the message.

Dr. Stone oversaw the VHA's $16 billion modernization program with Cerner, which experienced criticism for having a bumpy rollout and for its budget being underestimated by billions.

Dr. Stone began working for the VHA in 2016 and served as the executive in charge under former President Donald Trump from 2018-21.

Secretary of Veterans Affairs Denis McDonough said, "We owe Dr. Stone an immense debt of gratitude for his leadership, especially during the pandemic.

"As much as I hate to see Dr. Stone go, I am grateful to him for staying through mid-July, during which time I will continue to lean on him and learn from him."

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