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Federal Civilian

Lawmaker Concerned About Patient Care Issues in VA’s New EHR System

Department of Veterans


Lawmaker Concerned About Patient Care Issues in VA’s New EHR System

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers has raised concerns about patient care issues in the Department of Veterans Affairs’ modernized electronic health record system.

In a letter sent to VA Secretary Denis McDonough, McMorris Rodgers said veterans are facing dangerous and unacceptable delays in medical services, with some struggling to fill their prescriptions with the new EHR system.

Citing reports from Spokane and Coalville in Washington, she noted complaints from veterans who either received wrong prescriptions or failed to receive them on time, FedScoop reported Thursday.

The congresswoman added that patients are having a hard time using the new Cerner patient portal, which, according to reports, only runs on Microsoft browsers, leading to confusion among users.

The issues with the EHR system have persisted since its initial rollout at the Mann-Grandstaff VA hospital in Spokane, Washington. The General Accountability Office has warned the VA about these issues and instructed the agency to stop its release beyond the initial launch site, citing potential system failures without fixes.

The VA has acknowledged the issues raised by McMorris Rodgers and has begun efforts to help veterans make better use of the new patient portal. 

Speaking with FedScoop, the VA said it has already identified aspects where veterans in the Greater Spokane area might need help with. 

In addition, the agency has set up educational resources, including a most frequently asked questions website with step-by-step instructions, to help veterans confused by the changes in the EHR system. 

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Category: Federal Civilian