Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Indiana FSSA announces new hybrid Medicaid processing system

The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration has announced a new hybrid eligibility processing system for Medicaid applications. This follows Governor Daniels' decision this fall to terminate the "modernized" eligibility processing system which had been plagued with errors and delays.

The new system will focus on delivering a more personalized approach to the processing of Medicaid applications. Previously, in counties where the modernized system had been rolled out, applicants had to file applications online, which were processed in a centralized office. Questions about applications could only be submitted to a state-wide call center, with no single caseworker assigned to an individual application. This led to widespread problems, delays, and a general lack of accountability across the system.

Now, applicants will be able to speak face-to-face with caseworkers in their own counties about questions with their applications. Problems can be resolved before a decision is made on the application, which may lessen the need to file costly appeals. If an error is made, a caseworker directly assigned to the application will be able to address it.

It remains to be seen if this new system will bring about the reforms that have been desperately needed for so long. Nevertheless, it represents a good faith effort on the part of the State to address these serious problems. For counties (including Hendricks and Marion) where the modernized system had not yet been rolled out, there will be no changes, and Medicaid applications will be filed in the local county offices just as they always have been.

Great new way to communicate with loved ones during an illness!

I just recently learned about a new website that is designed to help those experiencing an illness or health emergency keep loved ones informed of their progress . allows an individual to create a personalized web page that can be accessed by friends and relatives. The individual can use the page to post news about their health status or any other information they wish to share. In this day and age when family members are far-flung and getting out information during an emergency can be difficult, this sounds like a great way to keep everyone in the loop!