'Way Ahead' architecture to serve as backbone for iEHR

New work on the enterprise architecture (EA) created for the joint integrated electronic health record effort of the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs will be based on work already completed by each department, according to a DoD report.

The Military Health System's "EHR Way Ahead" architecture will serve as the backbone for the iEHR EA, according to the report. Way Ahead is the EHR system DoD plans to implement to replace the Armed Forces Health Longitudinal Technology Application (AHLTA) and the Composite Health Care System (CHCS).

"This architecture has been under development, evolution and evaluation for a number of years," the report notes. "In early 2011, the Departments agreed that MHS EHRWA architecture would be the 'presumptive' architecture.

The report adds that since then, the architecture has matured into the "target iEHR EA" because of its dual functionality.

"The joint DoD/VA functional and technical assessment of the EHRWA EA that preceded iEHR EA development is providing a springboard for current efforts," the report says.

The anticipated end result of these efforts, according to the report, are a "coordinated 'best-of-breed' approach" that mixes "SOA-compliant capabilities, commercial off-the-shelf, open source and custom systems." The report also notes that the Defense Manpower Data Center will serve as the lone "identity management" source for the iEHR.

A preliminary version of the iEHR is expected to be rolled out by the VA in 2014. Overall, the iEHR project is expected to cost around $4 billion.

Harris Corp. recently replaced ASM Research as a key contractor on the project.

To learn more:
- here's the DoD report (.pdf)