The Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense announced that the Virtual Lifetime Electronic Record (VLER) using the Nationwide Health Information Network is now expanding. DOD and the VA have selected the Virginia/Tidewater area of Southeastern Virginia to partner with since this area has a high concentration of veterans, military retirees, members of the guard and reserve, along with active duty service members and their dependents.
The plans for the Virginia/Tidewater area include having VA and DOD partner with private sector hospitals who have joined a regional health information exchange in the area. The Virginia/Tidewater pilot builds on the success of the first pilot initiated in San Diego with Kaiser Permanente.
Service members and veterans in the area will be invited to participate in this health data exchange program scheduled to launch this year. Individuals who choose to participate will authorize their public and private sector health care providers and doctors to share specific health information electronically, safely, securely, and privately. No exchange of information will occur without the appropriate permissions of the individual patients.