How the Coast Guard’s ugly, Epic EHR break-up played out

How the Coast Guard’s ugly, Epic EHR break-up played out

What began as a straightforward software contract with Epic resulted this week in the U.S. Coast Guard starting its entire EHR acquisition process over some seven years after it began.

EHR implementations are notorious budget-busters often fraught with missed deadlines and other unforeseen complications, but for an organization to abandon the project altogether and embark on a new beginning is uncommon.

Indeed, this occurrence includes some finger-pointing from both sides. So what exactly went wrong?

October 5, 2010
The Coast Guard awarded Epic a 5-year $14 million contract for what it said at the time would be a state of the art electronic health record platform with modules for dental, laboratory, patient portal, pharmacy, and radiology.  Epic was also contracted to offer training, testing, backup services and help desk support.

April 22, 2016
Citing significant risks and various uncovered irregularities, the Coast Guard pulled out of its contract with Epic.

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