Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the Defense Department to get bids for development of the new system, the department said in a statement Wednesday.
The statement said the new system — along with efforts already underway to speed up service to veterans — will improve continuity of care but does "not address the problem of the existing VA backlog."
Frustrated by the continuing backlog, members of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs wrote to President Barack Obama on Wednesday asking him to help end "the bureaucratic back and forth" between the Pentagon and VA regarding health records. The letter said the VA can't keep a promise to shorten the claims review period because of the length of time it takes to get records from the Pentagon.
Hagel and Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki were meeting later Wednesday with senators to talk about progress toward reducing the backlog.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.