Enterprise Command Center and Artificial Intelligence Help VA Monitor IT Infrastructure
Veteran Health Administration (VHA) providers rely on the critical information systems that aid them in providing services to Veterans. When those systems are disrupted, Veteran care can grind to a halt. Due to innovations by Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Information and Technology (OIT) Enterprise Command Center (ECC) in Austin, Texas, downed mission-critical IT systems can now be returned to service rapidly.
These capabilities are rooted in ECC’s comprehensive view of the many complex IT systems powering VA. In the past, it took longer to identify, understand, and resolve IT issues because VA’s systems were monitored separately, leaving gaps and limited visibility into system degradation and disruptions. But today, ECC employs advanced end-to-end tools to map IT system dependencies across the entire VA network and proactively monitor IT infrastructure and over 150 applications.
As part of OIT’s efforts to modernize and institutionalize new capabilities, ECC staff also employ some of VA’s most advanced technology, including artificial intelligence (AI). AI tools continually collect information on VA’s IT systems and services. The tools then compare statuses to established standard baselines and key performance indicators to detect disruptions, or even predict them before they occur, and alert staff accordingly. ECC’s comprehensive network view and advanced AI capabilities allow OIT staff to rapidly pinpoint root causes and take immediate action to respond. Quicker detection and identification of IT system problems translate into reduced negative impacts and fewer service disruptions for Veterans.
For example, ECC recently solved a problem with the National Utilization Management Integration (NUMI) application that had direct implications for patient care. NUMI is a web-based quality and efficiency tool that aids VA in examining how patients move through the healthcare system and in maximizing use of resources along the way. ECC analyzed the problem, isolated the root cause, engaged the appropriate subject matter experts to resolve it, and in under two hours.
As the ECC continue to collect, synthesize, and analyze operational and diagnostic data, as well as harness the power of AI to predict and mitigate IT challenges, this new team will drive rapid organizational efficiencies. Their work will streamline the tools available to our VHA colleagues, and most importantly, will enable a seamless, exceptional customer service experience for our Veterans.