February 22, 2018 | Written by: Vivek Sawhney
Categorized: AI/Watson | Business Partner | Government
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No one likes to stand in long lines and enter the same information many different times. Unfortunately, that’s what our citizens often face when applying for government health and human services programs.
IT systems at many agencies are out of date, typically 20 to 30 years old, and they usually don’t offer citizens the ability to serve themselves. Having to travel to an agency office to discover and apply for services or change an application can be a time-consuming and frustrating process. And manual processing adds to the overhead of agency caseworkers, creating backlogs that slow everything down.
We at eSystems have a special appreciation for such problems. As an IBM Business Partner in the IBM Watson Health group, we implement solutions for health and human service clients in the public sector. I can say without hesitation that today’s advanced solutions can greatly improve the services government agencies deliver to the citizens they serve.
Making life better for Arkansans
Our perspective is fresh because we recently implemented the latest upgrade of the IBM Cúram Social Program Management (SPM) solution for the Department of Human Services (DHS) in the State of Arkansas. DHS is the state’s largest agency, with 7,400 employees serving 1.2 million Arkansans every year to help them lead healthy and safe lives.
We first engaged with Arkansas DHS in 2013 in response to their need for an enterprise-scale, commercial-off-the-shelf software framework to automate the processes of their many divisional offices, including implementation of federal health care reform legislation, Medicaid eligibility processing, integration with external systems and back-office benefits processing.
Within five months we deployed the IBM Cúram SPM Platform, making Arkansas one of the few states to meet the Federally mandated October 1, 2013, deadline for accepting modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) Medicaid applications.
Today, the system is used by approximately 500 DHS caseworkers and 400 internal administrators across 86 county offices. It serves some 880,000 Medicaid assistance recipients, including more than 550,000 external accounts created via a self-service citizen portal.
Enhancing citizen services
The latest Cúram upgrade, version 7, offers significant benefits to the DHS and its clients. Users appreciate the consistent and intuitive interface across all SPM modules, and increased performance allows the DHS to defer purchases of new hardware.
In addition, intelligence built into the solution frees caseworkers from manually applying complex Medicaid eligibility rules. Now, 60 percent of new applications and 80 percent of renewals are processed automatically. Instead of performing tedious calculations, caseworkers can spend more time with their clients.
Such enhancements have a positive impact on DHS services. Performance increases and intelligent automation lead to more effective application processing, which means the citizens of Arkansas can access their healthcare when they need it.
Watch eSystems’ Vivek Sawhney discussing IBM Cúram SPM implementations:
eSystems, Inc., headquartered in Princeton, NJ, is an IT and business services organization with over 18 years of experience delivering quality technical resources to clients across the country. Serving over 10 state governments and 50+ private sector accounts, eSystems’ roots are grounded in helping public sector and private organizations better serve their stakeholders – members, citizens, providers & employers – thought developing business and technology solutions that are scalable and robust.