VA's new contract puts the heat on Oracle Cerner

The Department of Veterans Affair has renegotiated its $10 billion contract with Oracle, which dramatically increases the company's accountability for the troubled VA Cerner EHR system. 

Under the modified contract, Oracle Cerner will have to pay larger fines or "monetary credits" if the Cerner EHR system does not meet the agreement's requirements, according to a May 16 press release from the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs.  

The contract, which was originally signed in May 2018, was supposed to last 10 years with a five-year option period that expired May 16.

"This new agreement reflects Oracle's commitment to Veterans' healthcare as well as complete confidence in our technology and our partnership with the VA to deliver an EHR that far exceeds the expectations of users," Mike Sicilia, executive vice president of Oracle Global Industries told Becker's in an emailed statement. 

The news comes shortly after the VA decided it would halt the large-scale rollout of the Cerner EHR system at its additional facilities due to its ongoing issues, delays and outages. 

Currently, the system is only live at five VA medical facilities.

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