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  • J. Olson

250,000 Veterans at Risk of Medication Mix-ups Due to VA Electronic Health Record System Issue

A government watchdog has recently warned lawmakers that approximately 250,000 veterans are at risk of receiving the wrong medications due to an issue with the VA's new electronic health records system.

The glitch in the VA's system could potentially cause veterans to be prescribed medications they are allergic to, or receive medications that have negative interactions with other medications they are already taking.

The watchdog said that the VA has not adequately notified veterans that their prescription records may be wrong.

VA electronic health records system

A VA official at the same hearing stated that they have not found any patients who were harmed by negative drug interactions caused by the issue.

The VA's new electronic health records system has been plagued by a number of issues since its launch. So much so, that the VA decided to pause rolling it out at any additional sites while they worked to resolve the issues. has more details on what specifically is causing the current issue:

At issue this time is the way the Oracle system inputs data into a medical records database known as the Health Data Repository that stores information about patients' medications and allergies. When patients are prescribed new medications, a provider will check against the information in the database to ensure there are no allergies or drug interactions.
But because of an error in the way the Oracle system codes data sent to the database, incorrect information appears when the database is checked using the old electronic health records system, known as Vista.
That means, if a veteran visits one of the five medical centers that use the Oracle system, their medication history could be wrong if they later seek care at a facility that still uses the Vista system. About 250,000 veterans were affected by the issue as of September, Case testified, citing data provided by the Veterans Health Administration.

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have become more and more angry with the new Oracle system due to the number of problems it has already had.

It was a $10 billion program and so far has only been rolled out in just five states in the U.S..

"The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result," stated Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-Mont.). "I have come to believe that continuing this effort -- to transform the Oracle Cerner pharmacy software into something completely different -- is insanity."

Hopefully all veterans who may be effected by this issue will be properly informed by the VA of the issue, and things will be resolved as soon as possible.


Mar 17

Keep me posted, name the States


Mar 17

Keep me posted , and name the States

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