In leaked audio, Jared Kushner says VA-Cerner decision happened in '2 weeks'

Jessica Kim Cohen -

In a leaked hour-long address to Congressional interns Monday, White House Adviser Jared Kushner said the deal with Cerner is "one of the great successes we've had so far" in reforming the Department of Veterans Affairs, according to an audio recording obtained by Wired.

In March, VA Secretary David J. Shulkin, MD, said he planned to decide whether the VA would move its EHR to a commercial platform in July. However, in a move ahead of schedule, Dr. Shulkin announced the VA would implement Cerner as its systemwide EHR during a June 5 news briefing.

In his recent remarks, Mr. Kushner detailed how the decision came about. Mr. Kushner said he, Dr. Shulkin and Secretary of Defense James Mattis were discussing the VA's EHR, the Politico Morning eHealth newsletter reports. Together, they convened top EHR experts from each department.

"We said, guys, we want a solution to get us on one system," Mr. Kushner said, as reported by the Politico Morning eHealth newsletter. He added they gave the EHR experts a deadline of two weeks to solve the VA's EHR issue, which the group accomplished.

In comparison, Mr. Kushner said the VA had "been holding Congressional hearings since 2000. Sixteen years and nothing's happened."

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