Palantir inks $90M data integration contract with VA

A view outside the New York Stock Exchange as the city continues Phase 4 of re-opening following restrictions imposed to slow the spread of coronavirus on September 30, 2020 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai / Getty Images)

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Big data analytics company Palantir is expanding its health- and defense-related work with its first major contract with the Department of Veterans Affairs, the company told FedScoop.

The deal will give the VA new tools to integrate data from across its health and benefits systems into its Common Operating Platform (COP), a move Palantir says will give leaders deeper insights into the services the department offers veterans. The value of the deal is $90 million over four years, according to Palantir.

Palantir was awarded numerous contracts with health agencies during the coronavirus pandemic to track the spread of the disease. It had a pilot with the VA as well, but officials with the company say this contract marks the first full award the company has received.

One challenge that Palantir’s tech aims to address is collecting data on wait times in private hospitals that veterans can use as a result of the MISSION act, that opened up private hospital services to VA patients. Palantir hopes to provide VA executives deeper insight on the quality of care veterans are receiving.

Palantir officials said the VA will retain ownership of all of its data and the system will link into existing IT and data platforms within the VA.

The type of decisions the company hopes to support include giving VA leaders insight on when and where to hire more doctors, the quality of services veterans are being offered both in and out of VA hospitals, and what benefits veterans might be eligible for.

Palantir’s tech may also process data on the VA’s troubled Electronic Health Records modernization program. The $16 billion, 10-year program to remake the entire health IT system medical providers use with patients has earned several negative Government Accountability Office (GAO) and Inspector General reviews, some which recommended the program be paused to ensure more testing could be done on the system.

The company has previously worked with the VA on Covid-19 surveillance pilots, but officials said this is the first full contract the department was awarded the company. The contracting offices span across the Office of Enterprise Integration, Veterans Health Administration and Office of Information Technology.

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big data, Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Palantir
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