5 Things to Know About the DoD EHR Contract and Upcoming Bidding War

The U.S. Department of Defense is seeking a commercial solution to replace its current electronic health record and information system. While the department has not yet issued a final request for proposals, several partnerships have already formed to compete for the contract.

1. The DoD's Military Health System is comprised of 56 hospitals and 365 clinics, and serves about 9.7 million beneficiaries. The EHR project, called the Healthcare Management Systems Modernization contract, is estimated to be worth $11 billion.

2. Three of the current bids have been major EHR vendors partnering with companies with experience in large-scale government contracts. Epic and IBM were among the first to announce their intent to bid on the contract. Their proposal includes using Epic's electronic health record software coupled with IBM's systems integration, operations and change management expertise to replace the current DoD system.

Allscripts, CSC and HP have also announced a partnership to bid on the contract. Under the bid, Allscripts' EHR technology would be coupled with CSC's and HP's large-scale health IT expertise to design and implement the system.

This week, Cerner, Accenture Federal Services and Leidos announced a similar partnership to combine Cerner's technology with Accenture's and Leidos' expertise.

3. Despite the DoD's emphasis on commercial products, the Department of Veterans Affairs has announced plans to bid on the contract. Former VA Secretary Eric Shinseki said the VA plans to create a more advanced version of its Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture.

4. Unless VisaA is chosen, the DoD and the VA will not share the same system. More seamless integration between the departments had been a goal of President Barack Obama — In 2009, he called on the departments to begin work on a "seamless system of integration" that would allow veterans' medical records to be shared electronically, and in 2011, both departments announced plans for the development of a single, joint EHR system. However in February 2013, the plan for a joint system was abandoned after costs spiraled close to $30 billion.

5. The DoD expects between four and six bids on the project. A winner is expected to be announced by the end of the year.

More Articles on the DoD:

Potential DoD EHR System to Cost $11B
Epic, IBM Partner to Bid on DOD's EHR Contract

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