Epic, IBM form advisory group in run for Department of Defense contract

Even before the Department of Defense selects the winning bid for its commercial EHR contract, Epic Systems and IBM — who have entered a joint bid with Impact Advisors — have assembled an advisory group to help inform best practices and suggestions for the contract, according to a Federal Times report.

In early 2014, the DOD released a call for bids for its Healthcare Management Systems Modernization EHR contract to replace its existing EHR and information system. The agency announced a final request for proposals in August, though it started receiving bids earlier in the spring.

Epic and IBM announced their plan to partner on a bid in June, proposing using Epic's EHR with IBM's system integration, operations and change management solutions and expertise. In August, Impact Advisors joined the bid.

Members of the newly formed advisory group include professionals from Norfolk, Va.-based Sentara Healthcare and Jacksonville, Fla.-based Nemours, among others, according to the report.

Forming the advisory group was a preemptive strategic move to ensure IBM, Epic and Impact Advisors could get moving quickly in the event that they are offered the contract, according to the report.

"Having an ecosystem of experts ready to provide expertise at the outset of DHMSM will prove to be invaluable and unmatched in the marketplace," said Andy Maner, manager partner at IBM Federal, in the report.

In addition to IBM and Epic, three other groups have submitted proposals to the DOD: Allscripts, Computer Sciences Corp. and Hewlett Packard; Cerner, Leidos and Accenture Federal; and PricewaterhouseCoopers, General Dynamics Information Technology, DSS and Medsphere.

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