Current Vistory

"CCHIT-certified World VistA EHR facing delays" By Joseph Conn, HITS staff writer,

…The delay can be attributed in large measure to unique legal and business considerations that arose by virtue of certification as an open-source software product, according to Joseph Dal Molin, interim president and vice president of business development for WorldVistA. "The main thing that has been the stumbling block for us is translating the (24-page) CCHIT agreement into an end-user agreement," Dal Molin said in a telephone interview. "We need to maintain certification in an open-source world. As bizarre as it may seem, we didn’t anticipate that as part of the (development) effort."

The agreement seeks to bind vendors and end-users of WorldVistA EHR in the way they customize and modify the software so that the CCHIT certification can be maintained, Dal Molin said. It also spells out vendors’ and end-users’ financial obligations to WorldVistA for its services, including: keeping the software up to date with the stream of software patches to VistA emanating from the VA; reimbursement for the $28,000 fee paid to CCHIT for the testing process toward certification; and royalty fees that will be paid to the American Medical Association and the U.S. Postal Service for use of their CPT and ZIP codes. The licensing agreements with the AMA and the USPS are still being worked on and are also delaying the release of the certified version of WorldVistA EHR, according to Dal Molin. A list of drugs from the VA’s National Drug File also is being updated and some templates to the system are being tweaked, he said.

An outline of Dal Molin’s presentation of a business plan and outlook for WorldVistA EHR was presented at the WorldVistA organization’s semiannual meeting last month at the University of Washington in Seattle. It and a number of other presentations at the conference are available online.