VA wants patient kiosks to fill in gaps in mental health records

Another week, another plan to expand the capabilities of VistA at the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The VA is soliciting bids to develop a kiosk-based system for patients at mental health facilities who lack computer or cognitive skills to complete online self-assessments. The project, dubbed the Patient Assessment System, would combine audio cues with a web-based interface. Information collected through the kiosk would be converted to Health Level Seven International format and exported to each patient's EMR. The system also will summarize clinician findings for each patient and provide patient-specific educational material.

Government Health IT reports that VA officials say EMRs for psychiatric care often lack clinical details, and that the Patient Assessment System is intended to fill in some of the gaps.

According to the contract solicitation, the VA will test the system at clinics in Albany, N.Y., Honolulu, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., before deciding whether to roll out the technology nationally.

For details:
- check out this Government Health IT story
- see the VA contract solicitation