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Electronic Health Records Acquisition


Program Overview

On April 9, 2018, the Department of Defense (DOD) announced its intent to partner with the Coast Guard to deploy its electronic health record (EHR) capability across the service’s clinics and sick bays. On June 7, 2018, the Coast Guard and the Defense Health Agency (DHA) signed an Inter-Agency Agreement that formally established the partnership to deploy MHS GENESIS. Under this transition, the service will access the DoD-hosted MHS GENESIS that the DOD as well as the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are implementing enterprise-wide.

The Electronic Health Records Acquisition (eHRa) will modernize the Coast Guard’s healthcare data management by acquiring an EHR solution in place of its primarily paper-based health record system. Having an EHR capability will make patient record retrieval easier and faster, reduce administrative errors, and allow electronic information exchange with the DoD, the VA and commercial care providers. The Coast Guard’s EHR program, once fully implemented, will service all Coast Guard clinics and sickbays – ashore and afloat.

Why this program?

An EHR capability will enhance patient care and the Coast Guard’s ability to anticipate the healthcare needs of its service members. Electronic health records also will help the Coast Guard meet government requirements and the service’s own standards for recordkeeping. Currently the Coast Guard uses paper documents for its healthcare recordkeeping, which can prove to be challenging for service members. For instance, retrieving a patient’s health record from another location, such as in an emergency after deployment. The process takes time and limits real-time availability of critical health care data to the health care providers treating that patient whose drug allergies may be unknown and unverifiable.

MHS GENESIS is the chosen program for the Coast Guard’s move to electronic health records due to a number of factors that includes EHR interoperability and continuity of care throughout all military branches including the VA.

With MHS GENESIS, the Coast Guard will achieve:

  • Improved quality assurance ensuring increased efficiency, effectiveness, and positive outcomes;
  • Better analyses of health data through the ability to have instant access to complete records;
  • Interoperability with DoD and VA health record information that will allow for bi-directional exchange of information; and
  • Standardization which will allow seamless transfers for members between Coast Guard units.



  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Pharmacy
  • Lab
  • X-Ray
  • Referrals
  • Patient Portal

How is the program implemented?            

The Coast Guard is developing a strategic plan to share progress as the service transitions its clinics and sickbays from paper to electronic records via the MHS GENESIS system.

The eHRa program management office (PMO) is working closely with DHA’s PMO to coordinate the deployment of eHRa to the Coast Guard. The program will be deployed in line with DoD’s site rollouts to ensure cross-collaboration between services.

The medical community of interest (MED-COI) implementation provides the transport layer that allows for seamless electronic exchanges and health care record portability in a secure format, to ensure the highest quality and effective delivery of health care services for service members, veterans, and eligible family members.

Also, to enable the Coast Guard’s access to the MHS GENESIS system, the Coast Guard will establish a Virtual Private Network (VPN) solution for protecting Personally Identifiable Information (PII) patient and Protected Health Information (PHI) data that will ensure Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance. This VPN capability will transit through CGOne and Department of Defense Information Network (DoDIN) to serve as the Coast Guard’s gateway for MHS GENESIS.

The first steps to implementation include site surveys to assess the current networking capabilities at each location and to begin the upgrades to the information technology infrastructures where needed.

For information on MHS GENESIS, click here.


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