VA Officials Share Insights on Initial Cerner EHR System Deployment; Pamela Powers, Dominic Cussatt Quoted

2 mins read

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) implemented Cerner’s electronic health record system at Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center in Spokane, Washington, in October and VA officials said the initial go-live went smoothly, Federal News Network reported Monday.

“Today I’m happy to report that the first installment of this new system went extremely well,” Pamela Powers, acting deputy secretary at VA, told reporters Monday. “As we transition to the new health record in Mann Grandstaff and nearby rural clinics, veterans receive seamless care. No veteran’s treatment suffered as we moved to the new system.”

Powers said VA employees in Spokane used Cerner’s Millennium EHR platform to place more than 23,000 orders for admissions, medications and clinical tests during the first five days of deployment.

“We had very few tickets from an infrastructure and end user device perspective. … For a couple days we were able to get the total open infrastructure and end user device tickets down to zero,” said Dominic Cussatt, deputy chief information officer at VA. “There were no major critical IT issues that happened during go live and the system seems to be performing well a couple weeks out.”

John Windom, executive director of VA’s office of electronic health records modernization, said an after-action group will gather feedback from end users in Spokane to help inform future deployments of the new EHR system.

“We continue to assess our risk portfolio, our methodologies and our strategies, and we will refine them, especially as we move to the entire enterprise with deploying this solution,” Windom said. “I can tell you a lot of things worked.”

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