November is the month that we celebrate and recognize veterans. This is a great time to highlight how information technology advances at the Indian Health Service are improving medical care for American Indian and Alaska Native veterans. The Indian Health Service and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs are working together to improve the health of American Indian and Alaska Native veterans.
You might think that veterans get all of their medical care from the VA's Veterans Health Administration. This is not the case. Many American Indian and Alaska Native veterans receive care from IHS facilities.
VA and IHS have a history of successful collaboration. In 2010, we renewed an agreement to coordinate and share resources. And in 2012, we signed a reimbursement agreement, so VA compensates IHS for health care provided to American Indian and Alaska Native veterans.
IHS has always been a leader in electronic health records. With this latest initiative, IHS and VA are testing interoperability, allowing providers to use a secure health information exchange to share important medical records. This offers IHS providers better access to medical records documenting the care their patients receive at VA facilities, and vice versa. These tools make it easier for providers to work cooperatively to improve the quality of patient care. The exchange ensures that providers have access to the most accurate and most recent data about their patients. Learn more about the IHS health information exchange.
American Indian and Alaska Native communities have a proud history of military service. And here in the IHS Office of Information Technology, we are proud to be serving those who served.
CDR Rives is responsible for advising senior IHS leadership on all aspects of information resource management and technology and ensures IHS compliance with information technology laws, regulations, and policies.