Veterans Affairs announces extension of EHR award for Oracle Cerner

Oracle will continue to provide modernization support for the VA’s electronic health record system, according to a Thursday announcement.
The Oracle logo on an office building in Irvine, California. (REUTERS / Mike Blake)

The Department of Veterans Affairs announced Thursday that it has awarded Oracle Cerner — the embattled technology provider of the agency’s electronic health record system — with an extension of its contract for EHR system modernization.

The 11-month option, which the VA said “completes the second option period award,” follows a month of negotiations focused on “supporting value-added services” like system enhancements and improving predictability in hosting, deployment and sustainment, according to a release from the agency. 

VA Deputy Secretary Tanya Bradsher said in the release that the announcement is a “testament to VA’s commitment to keeping the best interests of Veterans, VA providers and taxpayers at the forefront while maximizing resources in a fiscally restrained environment.”

“Executing the second option period of the contract allows VA and Oracle Health to continue to drive forward on the goals of the reset and future deployments,” Bradsher said. “VA remains committed to holding ourselves and our vendors accountable for resolving challenges with deployment of the Federal EHR and moving forward productively.”


The VA also said that the objectives “align with and facilitate” the agency’s reset efforts for resuming site deployments, but noted that it will continue to evaluate future option periods.

The VA has faced several challenges in its work with Oracle, including a reported scheduling error linked to a veteran’s death, unresolved patient safety issues with pharmacy technology, record disappearance tied to missed treatment for a veteran and more

Oracle said in a press release that the EHR system aims to standardize technology management, trainings and workflows while supporting partnerships across agencies, including the Department of Defense and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, as well as commercial partners. 

“The contract extension is a testament to the progress Oracle and VA have made to fortify the EHR system over the past two years and deliver measurable improvements that help improve the lives of VA’s dedicated practitioners and the veterans they serve,” the release states.

Caroline Nihill

Written by Caroline Nihill

Caroline Nihill is a reporter for FedScoop in Washington, D.C., covering federal IT. Her reporting has included the tracking of artificial intelligence governance from the White House and Congress, as well as modernization efforts across the federal government. Caroline was previously an editorial fellow for Scoop News Group, writing for FedScoop, StateScoop, CyberScoop, EdScoop and DefenseScoop. She earned her bachelor’s in media and journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill after transferring from the University of Mississippi.

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