As part of its continuing commitment to provide quality service during the coronavirus pandemic, Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is extending the reach of a critical service delivery software, Enterprise-Wide Speech Recognition. Previously, only clinicians equipped with Government Furnished Equipment (GFE), such as a VA-provided laptop, had access to the speech recognition software. However, as COVID-19 mobilization across Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities continues nationwide, health providers are relocating to telework locations without GFEs. The new speech recognition software allows teleworking clinicians to experience the same speed, accuracy, and flexibility that previously was only available on VA-furnished equipment.
VA’s Office of Information and Technology (OIT) and VHA staff prioritized expanded access to enterprise-wide speech recognition to seamlessly deliver the Dragon Medical One software. The software permits clinical teleworkers to convert spoken data to an Electronic Health Record (EHR) for documenting Veteran care reliably and securely.
The expanded access means that clinicians can now stay productive anywhere by deploying verbal commands to convey sensitive patient information more naturally and efficiently. VA will use this solution through the duration of the pandemic to improve clinical telework efficiency and allow patients to receive care uninterrupted.
The rollout of the new speech recognition software is the result of close collaboration across VA. OIT’s Enterprise Program Management Office and IT Operations and Services , the VHA Executive Director of Heath Information Governance, and the VHA Medical Records Administrator worked together to implement Dragon Medical One automatically through the Citrix Access Gateway version 7.15, with hopes to move to version 1912 in the near future. The teams implemented the new remote capability within six weeks—allowing clinicians to connect remotely and securely to the VA network.
This effort not only meets Secretary Robert Wilkie’s mandate for VA to prioritize consistent, quality customer service to Veterans, but it also enhances the path to Electronic Health Record Modernization. Thanks to the focused collaboration and execution among OIT and VHA, clinicians now have the benefit of hands-free Veteran data recording, all in a safe, secure, environment.