DOD says military health systems Y2K-ready

The Defense Department announced today that its medical team spent about $130 million to ensure that health services provided for military personnel and other beneficiaries will not be interrupted by the Year 2000 computer problem.

DOD's Military Health System is Year 2000-compliant, and the system's 12 mission-critical systems have been reinstalled at all military hospitals worldwide, Cmdr. Lyn Hurd said at a press conference in Arlington, Va.

Hurd said systems that had a direct impact on patient care or medical readiness were deemed mission-critical, such as the Defense Blood Standard System, immunization tracking systems and Clinical Information Systems.

In addition to health services, Hurd said 99 percent of DOD's 356,000 units of biomedical equipment, such as X-ray machines, are Year 2000-compliant. Also, medical facilities, such as fire suppression units, heating and elevators, also will correctly compute dates in the new millennium, Hurd said.

Hurd said contractors that process administrative and management claims are expected to have their systems Year 2000-compliant by the end of June.

"We are ready to continue to give uninterrupted health care," Hurd said. "We have the execution to back it up."

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