Health IT to be Focus of $20 Billion NIH Contract

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is planning to prioritize health IT reforms as it beings the process of reviewing proposals for its Chief Information Officer – Solutions and Partners contract. This is the third of its kind, the first two expire in December 2010. The contract’s term is 10 years and will award $20 Billion.  It is expected to be awarded in early 2010. Sources sought notices were requested on August 4 as well as a draft request for proposals.

The contract will give particular preference to reforms providing health and biomedical-related IT services as the NIH aims to assist agencies with issues vital to the health IT reforms.

Robert Coen, deputy program director said, “Developing this GWAC is a key part of our new business development strategy as we prepare our organization to meet the future needs of government IT procurement.”  

In the notice NIH outlines its goals for the forthcoming contract as aiming to support health care workers by studying healthcare services and systems to assist in ensuring systems and equipment interface seamlessly with each other. Planned outcomes for the new proposal include electronic health records and the utilization of IT in the molecular biology realm. The ultimate goal however, as outlined by the notice, is to make systems consistent in accordance with the goals of the Federal Health Architecture (FHA) which include co-ordination of capital planning and invest in interoperable health IT.

Ten functionale areas are outlined in the contract: CIO support, outsourcing, IT operations and maintenance, integration services, critical infrastructure protection and information assurance, digital government, enterprise management systems, health care and biomedical research, software development and imaging.

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Written by Neel Mehta

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