It was supposed to be a major update of 40-year-old software that keeps tracks of patients' medical records and allows their doctors at the Department of Veterans Affairs' roughly 1,300 clinics and hospitals to order tests, prescriptions, and follow-up visits.
What's more, the new system would be compatible with a new system being installed by the U.S. military.
What it was, however, was a failure from the start. The system didn't work as it was supposed to. Care to veterans was delayed. Patients missed important medications. The system crashed repeatedly, creating more work for medical providers. Promises for fixes weren't kept. Officials misled Congress and the public about the severity of the problems.
Two years after it was installed at Spokane's Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center, the Cerner Millennium software still doesn't work well.
Here's a recap of the entire Cerner Millennium saga, as covered by The Spokesman-Review's Orion Donovan-Smith, Arielle Dreher, Thomas Clouse, Kip Hill, design editor Charles Apple, and others.