The future of healthcare technology for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) rests heavily in the cybersecurity of medical devices.

Medical devices plugged into a connectable network can’t be overlooked, said Marc Wine, a senior adviser for the VA Central Office, speaking today at an ACT-IAC Community of Interest meeting.

“We want to encourage that humans are at the center of healthcare services delivered,” Wine said. “The technologies, as we say, are tools that ought to enhance and show returns on investment of tangible and non-tangible qualities – patient outcomes, patient wellness, patient access, patient costs, and patient quality.”

Over the next two decades, Wine said, the VA will be in the era of “Healthcare 4.0.” During this time, VA will engage global network electronic health records systems, AI, real-time data collection and analysis, and user interfaces such as enabled augmented reality.

With this added connectivity across various healthcare devices, VA wants to look across Federal agencies for lessons learned in successful initiatives to determine what is best for protecting patient safety from cyber threats in both VA healthcare facilities and non-VA healthcare facilities such as home care.

“Health delivery organizations overall should be applying evidence-based standards for determining the vulnerabilities and threats across the lifecycle of the medical device,” Wine said.

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.