DoD gives industry homework around e-health records, intel IT services

Wednesday - 10/9/2013, 2:08pm EDT

Despite the government shutdown, the Defense Department is giving industry some homework.

DoD agencies released two notices to get industry motivated and excited about upcoming programs.

DoD's Health Management Systems Modernization Program issued a sources sought notice on FedBizOpps.gov seeking input from vendors on the current capabilities of electronic health records in the commercial market.

At the same time, the Defense Intelligence Agency issued a draft request for proposals in late September for the multiple-award Enhanced Solutions for the Information Technology Enterprise (E- SITE) contract-the follow-on to the $6.6 billion SITE acquisition awarded in May 2010 to 11 vendors.

The sources sought notice for the electronic health records system is the first step DoD is taking to replace its legacy applications — Armed Forces Health Longitudinal Technology Application (AHLTA), Composite Health Care System (CHCS), Essentris and the EHR component of the Theater Medical Information Program (TMIP)- with a commercial system.

"DoD is interested in the current state and capabilities of an enterprise EHRS, which are available "off-the-shelf" including VistA solutions," DoD wrote in the notice. "The DoD is also interested in whether an EHRS product has been recognized or rated by third-party commercial research firms such as KLAS or Gartner, whether the product has attained certification and are listed on the Office of the National Coordinator Certified Health IT Product List, if the product has attained at least Stage 1 of Meaningful Use, possesses substantial commercial market share, or has been recognized by third party user surveys as relatively easy to learn, adopt, use and maintain. Interested vendors will be invited to provide an overview and demonstration to the government of their EHRS product(s), which have been successfully deployed to large-scale, geographically-distributed medical systems and facilities."

DoD plans to hold a demonstration day during the week of Oct. 21 in Washington. But the government shutdown could delay that event.

The Pentagon earlier this year decided building a joint EHRS with the Veterans Affairs Department was too costly and too difficult. Instead, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered a review of the possibilities for updating the DoD electronic health system.

The outcome of the review detailed several choices for DoD, including buying a commercial system based on open standards to achieve interoperability with VA.

Meanwhile, DIA's draft RFP for E-SITE is part of a broader effort to consolidate and integrate IT contracting across all 17 intelligence community agencies.

DIA stated E-SITE has a ceiling of $6 billion over the five-year life of the contract.

"The E-SITE contract will provide worldwide coverage for IT requirements and technical support services supporting the government through system design, development, fielding and sustainment of global intelligence and command and control (C2) assets vital to the security of the United States," DIA wrote in the notice. "The purpose of the E-SITE contract is to satisfy the information technology requirements for the Department of Defense intelligence community, and would allow for external ordering of IT by other intelligence community Partners. The Virginia Contracting Activity recognizes that no single contractor may be capable of providing the full range of goods and services called for under this contract. Therefore, the VACA encourages, where appropriate, the teaming of contractors and vendors."

DIA planned to hold an industry day Oct. 10, but because of the government shutdown has postponed it to a future date.

DIA expects the contract to begin in May 2015.

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