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VA, CMS Announce Healthcare IT Initiatives

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The Department of Veterans Affairs and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have launched separate healthcare information technology initiatives at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society Conference in Las Vegas.

VA said Wednesday it created a beta version of the Lighthouse Lab platform built to help software developers access tools to create web and mobile applications for military veterans.

The department plans to release three initial requests for proposals for commercial off-the-shelf micro-purchasing agreements with a $3,500 threshold in support of the application programming interface management platform.

VA also aims to form a developer community to test APIs and developer support workflows, establish governance standards and build out documentation.

CMS Administrator Seema Verma introduced the department’s MyHealthEData initiative and version 2.0 of the Blue Button API during the HiMSS Conference.

The MyHealthEData, led by the White House Office of American Innovation, seeks to increase patients’ access to their medical records with technology.

Blue Button 2.0 is designed to help Medicare beneficiaries link claims data with applications, services and research programs.

VA Secretary David Shulkin said the department collaborated with CMS on the first Blue Button tool and will support its latest version as part of efforts to help patients manage and share health data.

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