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Google Joins Open Source Team Vying for DoD Contract

January 15, 2015
by Gabriel Perna
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One team for the vaunted Department of Defense (DoD) electronic health record (EHR) system contract just upped its game and added Google.

PricewaterhouseCoopers' (PwC) open source team announced it is adding Google Inc. to the mix. The team is competing with several other defense and EHR industry heavyweights for the Healthcare Management Systems Modernization (DHMSM) contract, worth a reported $11 billion. The project winners will aim to modernize the military health system’s information system infrastructure. The winning proposal will likely be announced in Spring 2015.

Google joins other members of PwC’s open source team, including EHR vendors, Palm Beach, Fl.-based DSS Inc. and Carlsbad, Calif.-based MedSphere, MedicaSoft, and systems integrator General Dynamics Information Technology. PwC, the project lead, is centering the bid on open source technology. MedSphere has created OpenVista, the open source version of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs health Information systems. This technology, the team says, will help the DoD avoid locking into a singular technology.

“Google is known for its expertise in innovative, secure and open technologies, and the power of Internet scale. Their capabilities can complement our proposed open-architecture solution and bring added value, agility and flexibility to the new Military Health System,” stated Scott McIntyre, PwC’s Global and U.S. Public Sector Leader. “Google can assist us in delivering a cost-effective and efficient solution to serve the healthcare needs of our military.”

Google’s Android mobile operating system has been famously promoted as open, compared to its chief rival, Apple’s iOS. An analyst from research and consulting firm GlobalData predicted that the open source team was in the best position to solve the interoperability issues plaguing previous EHR modernization efforts.

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