Transforming VA’s IT Organization to Better Serve Veterans: Insights from LaVerne Council, Assistant Secretary for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

 

Transforming VA’s IT Organization to Better Serve Veterans: Insights from LaVerne Council, Assistant Secretary for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Monday, July 18th, 2016 - 8:57
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In his second inaugural address, President Abraham Lincoln spoke of the tragedies of the Civil War and society’s need to unify and “to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan....”

Though much has changed since that time, Lincoln’s sentiment remains constant in the mission of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Changes in society, advances in technology, and the aftermath of recent military conflicts only underscore the importance of such a mission and the need to get it right.

In today’s technologically complex world, getting it right also means having an exemplary information technology organization to provide the highest level of service to veterans. Significant factors increase pressure on VA to change and adapt, facing shifting veteran demographics as the aging veteran population seeks out and uses benefits at much higher rates. IT is a key enabler that can help VA adapt and change, no small feat for the largest integrated health care system in the country; a benefits-processing organization equivalent to a medium-size insurance company; and one of the largest integrated memorial and cemetery organizations in the U.S.

What is VA’s IT strategy? How is VA changing the way it does IT? What about its enterprise cybersecurity strategy? LaVerne Council, Assistant Secretary for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, joined me on The Business of Government Hour to share her insights on these topics and more. The following excerpts from our discussion are complemented with additional research.

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