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VA Center for Innovation



We are constantly looking for opportunities to improve the quality of VA care and services, increase access to those services, reduce or control costs, and improve customer satisfaction. Our portfolio of work is made up of:


VACI believes in the power of competition. VACI hosts three different types of competitions:

  • Industry Competition
  • Employee Competition
  • Prize Challenge

These competitions are used to surface and source innovations that have potential for transformational impact. Learn more ›

Special Projects

Sometimes, unanticipated challenges surface or departmental opportunities emerge rapidly. To respond quickly, thoroughly, and efficiently, Special Projects provide VA with an avenue to arrive at innovative, helpful solutions.

Human-Centered Design

We believe that truly transformational innovation requires a deep understanding of our customers: Veterans and their families. To this end, we have begun to explore the Human-Centered Design methodology as an approach to building a Veteran-centered agency.

Learn more about our human centered design work here.

Innovators Network

The Innovators Network is a community of VA employees who are actively engaged in work that is moving the agency forward. This community facilitates collaboration, and enables colleagues—no matter the distance—to share ideas, challenges, opportunities, and to test and validate best practices.

Open Innovation

VACI believes in the "open movement" and supports open innovation at the VA. From connecting the public to VA's open data, to founding OSEHRA, a non-profit that has built and supports an action-oriented open source community that advances electronic health record software and related health IT at the lowest possible cost, VACI is serious about supporting open innovation.


VACI is home to a number of transformative fellowships:

  • Presidential Innovation Fellows
  • VA Entrepreneur-in-Residence
  • Senior Fellows

Current fellows:

Past Fellows:

  • Peter Almenoff, MD, FCCP, Senior Fellow, Director of the Quality and Safety Analytics Center (QSAC), the Inpatient Evaluation Center (IPEC), and the Office of Productivity, Efficiency, and Staffing (OPES)
  • Rick Avila, Entrepreneur in Residence, Senior Advisor to the VA CIO and founder of the Give a Scan project
  • Sarah Brooks, Presidential Innovation Fellow
  • Dave Chokshi, MD, MSc, consultant for public health and health care delivery
  • Adam Darkins, MD, Chief Consultant for Telemedicine, VHA
  • Rachel Harrison Gordon, Presidential Innovation Fellow
  • Andrea Ippolito, Presidential Innovation Fellow
  • Matt McCall, Presidential Innovation Fellow
  • Mollie Ruskin, Presidential Innovation Fellow
  • Doug Trauner, Entrepreneur in Residence, CEO and founder of Health Analytic Services, Inc. and Co-chair of the FCC mHealth Task Force
  • Henry Wei, MD, Presidential Innovation Fellow