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Transitioning to a Net-Centric, Service-Oriented Enterprise

Today the MHS has a number of health IM/IT systems that are helping electronically capture and exchange healthcare data on our 9.4 million beneficiaries. Each serves a specific purpose or need. From tracking wounded warriors as they move from the battlefield to a stateside facility. Or capturing patient allergy information. Each with its own set of needs.

But what if the MHS had the ability to expose data as a service and feed that data into an existing system, instead of creating a new system to record and track that specific set of information? Good news. In recent years, the MHS has been taking steps to have the ability to do just that. In other words, the MHS is preparing to transition from a systems- to services-based approach.

Service Oriented Architecture is an architectural style for building IT solutions. It facilitates addition of “new” capabilities to existing systems by making enterprise data easily available and accessible without compromising the security. You no longer have to build a new, separate system just to collect and view that specific type of data. This is key when it comes to supporting President Obama’s Open Data Initiative and improving our ability to adapt to changing business needs, such as Wounded Warrior Initiatives.

It’s important that doctors, patients, developers, and program managers understand the benefits of SOA and what it offers to them in their field. Some of these benefits include the ability to:

  • More easily create custom user interface and mobile applications
  • Display data from multiple systems in an integrated, common view
  • Federate data, eliminating single point(s)-of-failure
  • Support patient safety through enhanced insights and analytics
  • Integrate health care services through an Enterprise Service Bus
  • Enable visualization and disparate data “mash ups” for real time knowledge

For more information, please send an email message.

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Health IT City Plan


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