Big Blue announced on April 12 that the state of South Carolina has selected IBM to help modernize its statewide Medicaid eligibility system, transforming the delivery of health and social programs to its citizens. The solution is expected to improve program efficiencies while meeting big data challenges and opportunities as South Carolina migrates from a largely paper-based approach to a more open, automated platform to manage eligibility requirements.
The South Carolina Medicaid program serves nearly one million citizens. In replacing its current eligibility system, the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (SCDHHS) will streamline and improve access to citizens by providing 24/7 online self-service, and enhancing support for a mobile and community-based workforce. The goal is to make it easier to administer and manage eligibility for Medicaid and other social service programs, IBM said.
IBM officials also noted that states are making their health and social service program systems smarter to get vital services to those who need them. South Carolina will also integrate its Medicaid eligibility system with the federally run health insurance marketplace.
“Our updated Medicaid eligibility system will make it easier for all South Carolinians to access the state’s programs,” said John Supra, deputy director and chief information officer for SCDHHS, in a statement. “Our current manual paper-driven approach limits flexibility in our processes and impacts speed and consistency. We expect the new system to provide us a platform to improve our eligibility performance and be able to more quickly and cost-effectively respond to future changes to the Medicaid programs.”
South Carolina implemented IBM’s solution as part of an effort to leverage commercial off-the-shelf software. Moreover, the state is extending a partnership between SCDHHS and Clemson University where Clemson will host the solution. SCDHHS, Clemson and IBM are collaborating to develop a flexible environment that makes the best use of existing state investments.
“States like South Carolina are leading the way in transforming how they interact with their citizens,” said Craig Hayman, general manager of Industry Solutions at IBM, in a statement. “IBM supports South Carolina’s goal of delivering citizen-centric services, including those social programs that involve healthcare and related services where timely access to the right programs and benefits is the driving factor. In IBM, South Carolina has chosen a solution built and developed by healthcare and social services industry experts — a solution that can manage all the big data challenges and evolve as eligibility requirements change without service delivery interruptions to those citizens who need it most.”