Ohio Benefits Project All Hands Meeting Recognized Key Milestone - 11.17.2017
On Wednesday, November 15, 2017, the Ohio Benefits project team conducted an All Hands Meeting wherein project, agency, and county leadership and staff gathered together to recognize and celebrate project accomplishments to date. Most recently, on Monday, November 6, 2017, the Ohio Benefits Project Team successfully went live with the Ohio Benefits Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) / Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Pilot in Clark, Fairfield, Licking, Summit and Warren counties. This monumental milestone, which involved the Department of Administrative Services (DAS) in partnership with the Departments of Job and Family Services (ODJFS), Medicaid (ODM) and counties, serves as a culmination of years of collaboration, partnership and dedication across agencies and vendors. Since the project’s initiation in February 2013, the Ohio Benefits eligibility system is one of the central efforts of the Governor’s Office of Health Transformation’s (OHT) modernization project, driving to simplify state and local responsibility for eligibility determination, starting with updating its legacy eligibility systems.
Deven Mehta, Ohio Benefits Program Director and Deputy Director of Enterprise Shared Solutions for DAS, set the tone of the event by praising the team’s dedication and ability to meet each milestone: “When moving at the speed of a project of this size and magnitude, one forgets to pause and take a moment to appreciate what has been accomplished and all the hard work that the teams have given to the project’s success. While no project is without challenges, and there is still a long journey ahead, I would like to thank the entire Ohio Benefits Team and our agency and county partners for their hard work, and for their commitment to making tomorrow better than today.”
During the meeting, Deven also shared the Ohio Benefits project’s plans for 2018, which includes additional consumer and worker-focused initiatives as part of its robust portfolio of projects and solutions that will further OHT’s vision for transforming the way the state delivers health and human services to residents.
Speakers at the Ohio Benefits System All Hands Meeting included:
• Greg Moody, Director of Governor's Office of Health Transformation
• Bob Blair, Director of the Department of Administrative Services
• Michael McCreight, Assistant Director of the Department of Job & Family Services
• Barbara Sears, Director of the Department of Medicaid
• Stu Davis, Chief Information Officer of the Department of Administrative Services
• Joel Potts, Executive Director of the Ohio Job & Family Services Directors' Association
• Tim McCartney, Chief Operating Officer of Hamilton County CDJFS
All of the speakers reinforced their appreciation to the state and county project team members and stakeholders for their dedication and support to reach this key Ohio Benefits milestone.
Looking ahead, the Ohio Benefits project team is preparing for the statewide rollout of SNAP/TANF functionality in the system to the remaining 83 counties, which is tentatively planned for May 2018. This will once again align Ohio’s largest income-tested benefit programs – Medicaid, SNAP and TANF – within one integrated eligibility system.
For any specific questions related to the Ohio Benefits system implementation, please contact Deven Mehta (Deven.Mehta@das.ohio.gov).
Successful Launch of Ohio Benefits System SNAP/TANF Pilot - 11.10.2017
The Department of Administrative Services (DAS) in partnership with the Departments of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) and Medicaid (ODM) are pleased to announce the launch of the Ohio Benefits SNAP/TANF Pilot in Clark, Fairfield, Licking, Summit and Warren counties. This monumental milestone serves as a culmination of years of collaboration, partnership and dedication across agencies and vendors. Furthermore, the launch of the pilot now sets in motion the process to begin to sunset the legacy CRIS-E system, ultimately bringing us one step closer to achieving the Office of Health Transformation’s vision of enhancing and transforming the delivery of human services.
The magnitude of this milestone is reinforced in the recognition that the Ohio Benefits journey began in February 2013, when DAS launched the Ohio Benefits integrated eligibility project to be a flexible and future platform for all income-tested programs in Ohio. Since the project’s initiation, the Ohio Benefits project has implemented a robust portfolio of projects and solutions that have advanced OHT’s vision for human services transformation in Ohio. Notably, both MAGI and ABD Medicaid programs have gone live in Ohio Benefits as well as the Enterprise Document Management Solution to the Canton District.
With the launch of the SNAP/TANF Pilot, all counties statewide also received Medicaid-only system improvements, enhancements and defect fixes to further streamline the case processing experience for our case workers.
The Ohio Benefits system is one of the central efforts of the Governor’s Office of Health Transformation’s (OHT) modernization project driving to simplify state and local responsibility for eligibility determination, starting with updating its legacy eligibility systems. In a statement from OHT Director Greg Moody, “The hard work and creativity of the Ohio Benefits Project team put Ohio in a better position to more effectively meet the basic needs of our citizens. Throughout this project, the Ohio Department of Administrative Services has pioneered new concepts to drive efficiency, including industry-leading solutions for county shared services, enterprise document management and workflow, and interactive voice recognition capabilities for our counties. This is a significant achievement — the next important milestone in a series of successful reforms that are improving human services and health outcomes for all Ohioans.”
ODJFS Director Cynthia Dungey reinforced the significance of the milestone when she shared, “I am so proud of my ODJFS team, as well as DAS and counties, for all their hard work and dedication to get us to today. This milestone is significant as it signals the transition to the new Ohio Benefits system and the start of sun-setting our current CRIS-E system. All transitions to new systems are complex and challenging, but this will be well worth the effort and beneficial to Ohioans.”
Stu Davis, State Chief Information Officer, shared, “Congratulations to the entire team for their hard work and dedication in making this pilot successful and enabling county shared services. The alignment of JFS, Medicaid, county JFS/association, OHT, OBM and DAS has proven to be a strong partnership, with solid teamwork to be change agents in moving the State forward. Well done!”
Along with new functionality and enhancements, Ohio also launched a centralized enterprise document management and workflow solution that is tightly integrated with the Ohio Benefits system platform. The pilot counties now join the Canton District as being live on the new solution, and the statewide rollout to the remaining counties is planned for 2018.
This milestone was also celebrated by project partners: “The Ohio Benefits project has always been committed to supporting and serving Ohio’s counties and communities, and I want to recognize and thank the entire project team for their dedication, energy, and the innovative solutions they have delivered to this state,” said Joel Potts, Executive Director of the Ohio Job and Family Services Directors’ Association.
Lastly, Deven Mehta, Ohio Benefits Program Director shared: “It goes without saying: large technology transformation projects are complex and challenging. However, time and time again, the Ohio Benefits team has gone above and beyond and is achieving the State’s strategic goal of increasing standardization, efficiency, and collaboration across counties for both Citizens and workers. We would not be where we are without the contributions made by each and every member of this team.”
For any specific questions related to the Ohio Benefits system implementation, please contact Deven Mehta (Deven.Mehta@das.ohio.gov
Enterprise Workflow and Document Management - 11.3.2017
In an effort to transform Health and Human Services program delivery, standardize business processes, and improve client outcomes, DAS continues its implementation of the Ohio Enterprise Document Management and Workflow solution.
Working closely with the Ohio Job and Family Services Directors’ Association (OJFSDA), the state’s goal is to bring all 88 Counties onto one unifying platform and solution to allow for increased standardization, collaboration across counties, and increased efficiency.
The significance of this initiative is reinforced by Joel Potts, the OJFSDA Executive Director, who stated “one of the greatest challenges at the local level in the health and human services field in Ohio has been the increased need to save and manage the huge amounts of documents collected by the County Job and Family Services agencies. One by one counties have invested in technologies to meet this growing demand and the result is a hodgepodge of systems that do not allow for seamless information sharing across county lines. We are extremely pleased and excited about the Canton District pilot counties currently using the Enterprise Document Management system and for the eventual rollout that would bring the other remaining counties onto the system as well. This will allow for cross-county collaboration to deliver critical services to our clients in a simplified and streamlined manner.”
Deven Mehta, the DAS Ohio Benefits Program Director, further captured the importance of this initiative and implementation when he stated “the Governor’s Office of Health Transformation (OHT) has a clear vision to transform health and human service delivery in Ohio, and DAS is excited to lead the collaborative effort with the Departments of Medicaid, Job and Family Services and the Counties to identify and implement value added solutions that directly promote OHT’s vision. This solution does just that, and I am pleased that Ohio Benefits project can be the driving force to bring this to the Counties.”
The initiative began in January 2016, when the state successfully launched the enterprise solution across 20 Counties in the Canton District. The centralized enterprise document management and workflow solution was integrated with the Ohio Benefits system platform, and together, serve as the critical components toward achieving a streamlined County Department of Job and Family Services (CDJFS) caseworker and customer experience.
The Canton District pilot successfully demonstrated several significant benefits for counties and consumers, including:
- Innovative Technologies – Leveraging new tools to improve and accelerate access to care for specific under-served populations
- Greater Collaboration and Data Sharing Among Counties – Improved avenues for consumer data sharing, communication, and workload sharing among counties – especially during open enrollment and/or emergencies
- Standardization of Taxonomy – A new standardized taxonomy on how information is stored will allow for simplified processes and clearer organization of client information among counties
- Increased Caseworker and Consumer Satisfaction – Consumers directly benefit from these new technologies and solutions, which provide a smoother and more efficient experience within CDJFS offices, as pre-filled forms and dedicated workflows helped automate and accelerate document processing and viewing for caseworkers
As part of the Ohio Benefits SNAP/TANF Pilot, the Enterprise Document Management and Workflow solution implementation continues with the pilot counties in Fairfield, Licking, Summit, Warren, and Clark. The statewide rollout for Ohio’s remaining counties is planned for late 2017 through early 2018. In addition, as part of the statewide implementation, all counties will benefit from additional capabilities, including:
- Self-service kiosks within offices to help expedite the frequent and time-consuming task of processing and scanning consumer documents
- Appointment and lobby management solutions that will help streamline the service process for consumers and enhance the productivity and accountability of CDJFS caseworkers
For any specific questions related to the Ohio Enterprise Document Management and Workflow solution, please contact Deven Mehta (Deven.Mehta@das.ohio.gov).
Ohio Cybersecurity Day - 10.27.2017
Join us on November 27, 2017 for Ohio Cybersecurity Day
at the Department of Transportation in Columbus, Ohio. This event, sponsored by DAS OIT, offers informative discussions and presentations on current cybersecurity topics. Attend the event to:
This year’s conference features a number of cybersecurity experts, including representatives from the DAS Office of Information Security and Privacy, FBI, Gartner, Interhack Corporation, Ohio Department of Public Safety, Ohio Homeland Security, Ohio National Guard, Skyhigh Networks, Ubersecure, and Verizon.
Please plan to take advantage of this free conference for public sector IT and cybersecurity professionals.
Registration is now open!
Visit www.infosec.ohio.gov for more information.
Ohio Turnpike Commission Prepares for Autonomous Vehicles - 10.20.2017
The Plain Dealer recently published an article, “Ohio Turnpike Commission approves communications system for connected and autonomous vehicles,” announcing the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission’s recent approval of a $1.46 million contract with Logicalis to promote vehicle communication technology. As a result of the project, sensors will be installed along portions of the turnpike and will be used to transmit important information to connected vehicles such as traffic, weather, and work zone details.
The effort is a proof-of-concept in support of Governor Kasich’s DriveOhio plan. Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission Executive Director Randy Cole, as quoted in The Plain Dealer article, stated, "The Ohio Turnpike is embracing its role on the forefront of transportation technology. We expect immediate safety and efficiency benefits."1
1 Segall, Grant. “Ohio Turnpike Commission approves" communications system for connected and autonomous vehicles.” The Plain Dealer 16 October 2017. 19 October 2017 <http://www.cleveland.com/metro/index.ssf/ 2017/10/ohio _turnpike_commission_approves_ communications_system_for_connected_and_autonomous_vehicles.html>.