Military health records system suffers outage after software upgrade

The Military Health System recently was forced to take its Armed Forces Health Longitudinal Technology Application clinical data repository offline after a commercial software upgrade tripped up the records system, according to a NextGov report.

The shutdown happened Jan. 17 “in order to correct a problem with a version upgrade to storage services that was loaded over the weekend,” according to Mary Ann Rockey, MHS program executive officer for Joint Medical Information Systems. The system was taken down in the morning and was back up by evening.

MHS is in the process of improving AHLTA’s storage speed and capacity and some areas have already been upgraded, according to the report.

“Our analysis determined the root cause [of the shutdown] was a new version of commercial software that was installed with the AHLTA upgrade. The commercial software causing the problem has been rolled back to a previous version while the vendor addresses the issue to prevent future disruptions,” Rockey told NextGov. She did not specify the commercial software.

According to AHLTA’s website, the system covers more than 9 million beneficiaries, 132,700 MHS staff, 412 medical clinics, 414 dental clinics and 65 military hospitals.

During the outage, health care providers used AHLTA in “local mode,” without access to the global data base.

About the Author

Amber Corrin is a former staff writer for FCW and Defense Systems.

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