Data Governance Design for Collaborative Multi-Agency Data Analysis

Overview

The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration’s (FSSA) vision is for “all Hoosiers to live in fully engaged communities and reach their greatest emotional, mental, and physical well-being”. FSSA’s primary services are childcare & education, employment help, food & cash assistance, health coverage (including Medicaid), home & community services, and mental health & addiction. For a government agency that oversees so many different services, it was of utmost importance for FSSA to leverage and maintain the quality of their data, especially considering this recent state initiative that includes cross-agency collaboration to help individuals in recovery secure housing.

Access to health insurance for ex-inmates is a real problem in the United States. Occasionally, states fail to re-enroll released inmates in Medicaid despite their inclusion in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). According to an article by NPR, most of the state prison systems in the 31 states that expanded Medicaid have either not created large-scale enrollment programs or operate spotty programs that leave large numbers of exiting inmates – many of whom are chronically ill – without insurance. This leads to a higher risk of re-incarceration and death among former inmates.

Challenge & Approach

Recently released inmates in Indiana have been neglected from Medicaid re-enrollment opportunities.  FSSA wanted to change this through a cross-agency data sharing initiative with the Indiana Department of Corrections (IDOC) that keeps both data quality and data security top of mind.  FSSA and IDOC engaged CSpring on a collaborative effort aimed at using data to identify and shorten the amount of time to suspend and reactivate Medicaid for the newly incarcerated and post-incarcerated populations in Indiana.

CSpring leveraged the Medicaid Information Technology Architecture (MITA) framework to create a data governance strategy that identifies, designs, and manages enterprise data across systems. Using the MITA framework ensured that our team would achieve efficient and effective data governance design for this intiative.  Our data governance strategy combined recognized industry standards and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recommendations to guide FSSA’s data sharing approach.

CSpring also worked to connect siloed and disparate datasets and tables and provided an analysis of the business processes behind the data exchange.  As a result, Medicaid is reviewing how to overlay Presumptive Eligibility (PE), a process that offers short-term coverage of health care services for those with limited incomes who are not currently receiving Medicaid, onto current processes to improve outcomes.

Results

CSpring’s data governance strategy holds data owners accountable for the consistency and quality of their data. FSSA can now leverage their data assets more effectively without worrying about their data quality, and they can collaborate across agencies to more efficiently deliver services to those in need. FSSA can also reduce costs at the state and federal levels by suspending Medicaid enrollees that are incarcerated and activating coverage upon release. This project advances the Medicaid Enterprise Systems through contributions to the growing body of research behind data governance and Medicaid enrollment and allows for other states to develop their own standards and processes.

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