Back to Top Skip to main content Skip to sub-navigation

DHA IT helps beneficiaries, providers and workforce through pandemic

Several military personnel, wearing masks, filling out paperwork. One woman is giving the thumbs up sign Defense Health Agency (DHA) COVID-19-related updates to Military Health System health care information technology systems ensure MHS providers like Navy Seaman Norelle Dry, assigned to Naval Medical Center San Diego, California, can continue to deliver top-tier care to Service members and beneficiaries during the pandemic. DHA IT system updates also helped patients manage their health care virtually and provided Department of Defense leaders timely information on critical medical supplies and equipment. (U.S. Navy photo by Seaman Elisha Smith.)

Recommended Content:

Technology | Coronavirus

Defense Health Agency information technology (DHA IT) teams demonstrated their versatility and responsiveness ensuring Military Health System patients continued to receive high quality health care during the COVID-19 pandemic and throughout 2020. The IT teams also provided innovative tools to MHS health care providers and DHA employees to enable to function during the pandemic.

For patients, they established virtual COVID-19 screenings and appointments, allowing patients to manage their health care online rather than in person at military medical treatment facilities (MTFs) where they could place themselves and others at risk of infection. For providers, they established COVID-19 protocols within electronic health record (EHR) systems and other health care applications enabling them to identify and document infections.

“As soon as the pandemic hit, our teams quickly kicked into high gear to deliver some critical updates to our systems and applications,” said Army Col. Francisco Dominicci, chief, DHA Solution Delivery Division, which sustains more than 60 different MHS health care applications. 

“We made updates to the TRICARE Online Patient Portal (TOL PP) to allow patients to make virtual visits with their providers via the portal,” he explained. “Starting in March, TOL PP facilitated more than 160,000 virtual visit appointments.”

Among other COVID-19 relief efforts, Dominicci said the IT teams worked with DHA Medical Logistics (MEDLOG) to update MEDLOG IT applications to track MHS personal protective equipment (PPE) and other critical medical equipment in real time. They also mapped strategies for tracking vaccine distribution across the Department of Defense. 

“In February, our teams created a Novel Coronavirus query tab in the Electronic Surveillance System for the Early Notification of Community-based Epidemics (ESSENCE) application,” he added. “The following month, they launched a COVID-19 dashboard in ESSENCE that allows users to monitor the number of COVID-19 lab results in real time.”

The IT teams also developed and released a progressive web-based application for Antimicrobial Stewardship with COVID-19 content in April to help providers with needed COVID-19 triage protocols, Dominicci said. 

In March, the IT teams expanded Enterprise Blood Management System-Transfusion (EBMS-T) blood availability reports to the Armed Services Blood Program to include greater inventory level details on all blood components maintained at MTFs. The teams also made configuration changes to EMBS-Donor, enabling donor sites to create labels to track COVID-19 convalescent plasma, which contains antibodies from COVID-19 survivors.   

Dominicci explained how the IT teams deployed a COVID-19 Sentinel Surveillance testing application using TOL PP in the fall. More than 250 users were provisioned across 35 military sites to use the application to gather information at the population level. Surveillance testing is used to monitor the community-level of a disease or to characterize its incidence and prevalence.

The DHA workforce was also able to transition to a telework environment after the IT teams ensured the networks could handle the heavy traffic. They also enabled multiple online collaboration tools, such as video conferencing, to keep the workforce connected.

Along with fighting COVID-19, the IT teams logged other impressive achievements last year. They completed major upgrades to in-patient EHR systems at 46 MTFs around the world in November, Dominicci added. 

In August, the DHA IT team launched the Defense Medical Logistics Standard Support (DMLSS) system at the joint DoD-Department of Veterans Affairs James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center in North Chicago. The DMLSS launch came after several years of planning, coordination and preparation between the DHA, DOD and VA. 

“The launch represented a major step in replacing the VA’s supply chain IT infrastructure with DMLSS,” Dominicci said. “The end goal is to establish a single DoD-VA health care logistics system for acquiring medical and surgical supplies.”

IT teams also completed conversions of legacy funding systems to the General Fund Enterprise Business System (GFEBS) at 26 Navy MTFs in September, he said. The GFEBS conversions enable DHA financial and funding control of Navy, Army and DHA sites that use DMLSS. 

In December, the teams completed an initiative to migrate 140 public-facing MTF websites to TRICARE.mil. Dominicci said the IT teams worked closely with the MHS Communications office, the Defense Media Activity and MTF public affairs office on the initiative, which should ultimately reduce site sustainment and hosting costs. Returning website users experienced no disruptions, as they were automatically redirected to the new sites. 

“These are just a few of the milestones DHA IT teams achieved in 2020,” emphasized Dominicci . “The IT teams met the pandemic head on and delivered highly effective, innovative solutions across the DHA and MHS.”

You also may be interested in...

Defense Medical Logistics Standard Support (DMLSS)

Fact Sheet
12/19/2017

DMLSS delivers an automated and integrated information system with a comprehensive range of medical materiel, equipment, war reserve materiel and facilities management functions.

Recommended Content:

Medical Logistics | Technology

No Patient Left Behind

Photo
7/26/2017
Army Col. Rich Wilson (left) moderates a panel discussion with current and former program managers from the Defense Health Agency's Solution Delivery Division. The panel, titled No Patient Left Behind: Leveraging Partnerships for Change, discussed the importance of supporting patient care during modernization as the MHS transitions legacy applications to new systems. Focusing on enterprise planning, patient risk mitigation, and the balance of investment, the panel discussed the importance of positive government and vendor relationships and ways to apply past experiences to build strategies for success in the future.

Army Col. Rich Wilson (left) moderates a panel discussion with current and former program managers from the Defense Health Agency's Solution Delivery Division. The panel, titled No Patient Left Behind: Leveraging Partnerships for Change, discussed the importance of supporting patient care during modernization as the MHS transitions legacy applications to new systems. Focusing on enterprise planning, patient risk mitigation, and the balance of investment, the panel discussed the importance of positive government and vendor relationships and ways to apply past experiences to build strategies for success in the future.

Recommended Content:

Technology

Classifying the Histomorphology of Prostatic Adenocarcinoma with Deep Neural Networks

Presentation
11/1/2016

Classifying the Histomorphology of Prostatic Adenocarcinoma with Deep Neural Networks

Recommended Content:

Research and Innovation | Technology

MHS GENESIS Brand Style Guide, Version 10.0

Publication
8/15/2016

The purpose of this style guide is to establish the MHS GENESIS brand guidelines and educate its users to observe the brand standards. Branding is a key supporting element for communication, training and deployment activities.

Recommended Content:

Federal Electronic Health Record Modernization (FEHRM) Program Office | Technology | MHS GENESIS Branding | MHS GENESIS Toolkit | Electronic Health Record: MHS GENESIS

Enterprise Intelligence Branch/MHS Population Health Portal

Presentation
8/9/2016

The first part of this presentation discusses the Enterprise Intelligence Branch, which supports the MHS strategic goals through delivery of timely, relevant, and actionable information toa ll levels of the organization. The second part describes the MHS Poulation Health Portal and shows examples.

Recommended Content:

Technology | Research and Innovation

Long Range Technical Architecture Strategy Accessible Version

Technical Document
7/28/2016

The Long Range Technical Architecture (LRTA) Strategy is a dynamic technology investment roadmap to help guide and optimize the MHS’ investments over the next decade, based on data-driven analyses. The LRTA links business needs to technical solutions and provides enterprise 'knowledge' through data democratization.

Recommended Content:

Technology

Vendor Information Form

Form/Template
7/27/2016

The Vendor Information Form provides a standard way to collect your ideas, problem statements, and/or proposed solution sets for defense health IT.

Recommended Content:

Technology

Improving Defense Health Program Medical Research Processes Update

Presentation
2/10/2016

Recommended Content:

Research and Innovation | Technology

Center for Wireless and Population Health Systems

Presentation
2/10/2016

Center for Wireless and Population Health Systems Briefing

Recommended Content:

Technology

MHS IM-IT Submission Form

Form/Template
5/18/2015

Fill out the MHS IM-IT Submission Form to submit an idea to foster change to an IM/IT capability, policy/process, or system.

Recommended Content:

Access, Cost, Quality, and Safety | Technology

Sustainment and Advancement of Amputee Care

Report
4/8/2015

This report provides Defense Health Board findings on amputee care and research in the Department of Defense.

Recommended Content:

Conditions and Treatments | Technology

MHS IM-IT Submissions Form Instructions

Form/Template
4/16/2014

Instructions for completing the MHS IM-IT Submissions Form. The form is used to submit an idea that fosters a change to an IM/IT capability, policy/process, or system.

Recommended Content:

Access, Cost, Quality, and Safety | Technology

2013 MHS Innovation Report

Report
3/3/2014

2013 Military Health System Innovation Report. This report contains information about MHS innovations in clinical care, research and development, and healthcare management. It also provides an overview of the MHS Innovation Program and information on the future of MHS innovation.

Recommended Content:

Innovation | Innovation | Innovation | Access, Cost, Quality, and Safety | Technology

Protected Health Information Management Tool (PHIMT)

Fact Sheet
10/1/2013

PHIMT stores information about Protected Health Information (PHI) disclosures, authorizations and restrictions for the Defense Health Agency.

Recommended Content:

Technology

TRICARE Encounter Data (TED)

Fact Sheet
10/1/2013

TED records, collects, verifies and tracks millions of dollars annually in purchased care claims and encounter data for TRICARE.

Recommended Content:

Technology
<< < ... 41 42 > >> 
Showing results 601 - 615 Page 41 of 42

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.