Leidos Partnership For Defense Health Continues Rollout Of MHS Genesis Electronic Health Record Advances

As the drive for federal IT modernization continues to drag forward, the Department of Defense continues its rollout of its new electronic health records system, Military Health Systems (MHS) Genesis, providing new access to facilities in 12 new states and reaching 10,000 clinicians and providers. The new expansion covers many middle-American states—everywhere from Missouri to Montana, Utah, Texas and more—replacing the legacy systems in over 600 military treatment facilities across the country.

The initiative has been in the works since 2015, fueled by the Leidos Partnership for Defense Health (LPDH), a partnership between the largest defense technology contractor and Cerner Corporation, Accenture, and Henry Schein One, plus approximately 30 more supporting businesses. The initiative is part of a tremendous multi-billion-dollar government program to ensure compatibility and interoperability between the DOD and Department of Veterans’ Affairs EHR systems.

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One of the biggest hurdles to modernizing government IT and other digitization efforts is bureaucratic disunity, which prevents interconnected departments and facilities from being efficiently and effectively overhauled. Cerner, a leading provider of cloud-based EHR systems, is utilizing its Millennium+ platform as the foundation for MHS Genesis, promising an elevated level of interoperability between departments, medical facilities, and other organizations.

Accenture Federal Services, another partner in the initiative, focuses on reskilling and training the federal workforce in IT, EHRs, and other necessary new skillsets. The fourth primary contractor in the partnership, dental and medical equipment supplier Henry Schein, brings its commercial electronic dental records (EDR) to fortify the combined records systems. The approach seems more straightforward than most government projects: companies working together to unify federal health systems.

The program’s quick, though incomplete, implementation is a rare success in the current movement toward federal IT and digital modernization, which is largely hindered by disconnected departments and outdated legacy systems. Although COVID-19 slowed efforts initially, the LPDH ultimately maintained its deployment schedule, with the full rollout expected by 2023. Although the DOD has kept with the pace, the VA has faced more struggles with the implementation of its new EHR modernization program. VA Secretary Denis McDonough has announced an internal review of the program in hopes of addressing problems and accelerating departmental digital transformation. For its part, the LPDH has proved indispensable in advancing the DOD efforts, and with President Biden’s support, hopefully active-duty military and veterans will soon reap the rewards of a modern healthcare infrastructure.