A PwC and Google Partnership has been announced in the Defense Department bid for an EHR contract.
PwC—short for PricewaterhouseCoopers—is a large multinational professional services network, and the company announced in October of last year that it would begin working with Google to bring “a variety of new and innovative technologies to companies around the world.” Reading that sounds unspecific and, frankly, because Google is always working on new technology, these kinds of announcements don’t really catch the eye of the public.
Today, though, PwC has announced a specific venture that Google is joining, and this one intends to reimagine the military health system in the United States…
PwC has confirmed that Google is acting as partner in its bid for the $11-million Department of Defense EHR contract. The team’s solution is based on an open-source version of the Vista EHR used by the Department of Veterans Affairs. This PwC and Google partnership stands to bring innovation and progress to healthcare according health IT leaders.
PwC says Google has always been a part of the bid, named the Defense Operational Readiness Health System. The tech giant will help provide infrastructure, including “cloud, security, storage, networking, and enterprise search capabilities,” according to Modern Healthcare.
Google can assist us in delivering a cost-effective and efficient solution to serve the healthcare needs of our military,” PwC Global and US Public Sector Leader Scott McIntyre said.
This adds some pretty significant muscle to the PwC offering. Not that the other groups are anything to sneeze at, but Google is nearly always the “most sought after” tech brand in the room. PwC health IT practice leader Dan Garrett told Modern Healthcare that Google brings its extensive search engine tools to their offering, allowing physicians to search for all patients with a particular condition, then draw correlations between patients with that disorder and comorbidities.
This kind of capability is “population management in its purest definition,” Garrett told MH.
PwC and Google are working with a few EHR (electronic health record) vendors—DSS, Inc., Medsphere Systems Corporation, and MedicaSoft—to make this happen, and the resulting EHR solution they hope will be “distinctive, reliable and secure” as well as open source.
The contract is set to be awarded in June. Other competing groups include a partnership between EMR vendor Epic Systems and IBM; a team including defense contractor and systems integrator Computer Sciences Corp., Hewlett Packard and EMR vendor Allscripts; and a group including EMR vendor Cerner, government systems integrator Leidos and Accenture Federal. Other partners in the PwC group include General Dynamics Information Technology and MedSphere.