October 13, 2022

Chairman Takano’s Statement on VA’s Decision to Delay EHR Rollout Until 2023

Press Contact

Miguel R. Salazar (202) 779-1486

RIVERSIDE, CA – House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Mark Takano (D-Calif.) released the following statement following Secretary McDonough’s decision to delay the rollout of a new electronic health record (EHR) until 2023: 

“I support VA’s plan to further delay EHRM go-lives until the system can be made safe for veterans. Patient safety should be the guiding principle for this program. However, it is clear this program was not given a foundation for success. I have been concerned from the very beginning that the sole-source nature of this contract, the lack of market research, misunderstandings about interoperability, and incomplete requirements development under the Trump Administration led to the situation VA is currently in.  

“We need a system that is safe for veterans and appropriate for clinicians. VA’s forty-year-old legacy system, VistA, is not a long-term solution. Clearly, modernization is necessary. Congress and taxpayers need confidence in this major investment and we need more information to assess the path forward. This is why it was important that Congress passed, and the President signed, Representative Mrvan’s VA Electronic Health Record Transparency Act, which will provide greater oversight of this program. Congress needs a clear analysis of continuing with the Cerner program, the risks and costs associated with delaying modernization and continuing to rely on VistA, or the potential use of other EHRs to meet VA’s clinical and interoperability needs. 

“I appreciate VA’s and Oracle’s placing the need for a safe and functional system above arbitrary deadlines or profits. I will continue to hold them accountable as we gather additional information about the impact of the delay and a viable plan for modernization.”