Servicemembers leaving the military should be heartened to know that the Defense Department and the Department of Veterans Affairs will develop a joint computerized health care system, The New York Times reported. The system is meant to provide a single source of data on a veteran’s health from enlistment through death, officials said.

The Times reported that among the advantages:

1) Speedier care for veterans, since they would not have to obtain records from the Pentagon that might be missing in their VA records.

2) A reduction in time it would take for vets to make the transition into the VA health system.

3) Making it easier for researchers and epidemiologists to spot health care trends. Many health problems facing veterans do not emerge until years after they leave the military, so being able to look at their full medical history could be useful to researchers.

While the project is expected to take years to complete, a joint system is currently under development in Chicago.

Read the complete New York Times story "Pentagon plans to consolidate military health records."

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