What is the VLER Health Exchange?
An EHR system designed for the exclusive use of the VA, its patients and their non-VA doctors. The system allows healthcare providers to instantly share vital patient information via a private, secure network. This can eliminate the wait time involved in getting referrals, exchanging valuable test results, and obtaining medical history. Essentially, the red tape is removed so medical professionals can move forward with informed care.
Streamlining the exchange of information between VA and non-VA healthcare providers is essential for optimizing care and improving the quality of outcomes for patients. While older, paper methods require days or weeks for the facilitation of communication between medical professionals managing the same patient, Electronic Health Records are changing all that. For the VA, the system that’s making an immediate difference in the speed of information sharing is the VLER Health Exchange.
While the VLER is available to VA patients, it is an authorization-based program. Military Veterans must grant their permission for healthcare providers to share information via VLER Health. Once granted, the permission enables VA and non-VA doctors to cut through the red tape.
Why Should People Participate?
The VLER Health Exchange was created to provide medical professionals the insights they need to properly care for their patients in a more expedient fashion. It saves time and effort while ensuring caregivers have access to medical history and overall health status so informed healthcare decisions can be made to enhance the overall quality of care.
What Information is Shared?
Patients cannot designate the type of information that is shared. The VLER Health Exchange was designed to provide medical professionals inside and outside the VA access to such critical information as:
- A comprehensive list of health problems
- Immunization records
- Physical records
- Progress notes
- Testing results and reports
- Medical history
The system also enables direct communication between providers via an email-like, private messaging system. Doctors can use this to share referrals, results of referrals and for other important, care-related dialogue. In essence, the VLER Health Exchange was created to enhance VA-related care through more instantaneous sharing of information that can better enable doctors to do their jobs on behalf of patients.
How Can Veterans Sign Up?
Signing up to participate in VLER Health and to enable non-VA medical professionals involved in care to access records is fairly simple. The VA offers patients under its care three ways to do so:
- Online – Visit www.ebenefits.va.gov and click on “Access My Documents.” From there, cross to the “health” section and look for “Manage My Authorizations and Preferences (VLER).” The system should provide a walkthrough from there.
- By Mail – Just print out VA Form 10-0485, fill it out and mail it to the local VAMC Release of Information Office.
- In Person – Visit the Release of Information Office at the local VAMC to obtain the paperwork, fill it out and return it.