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South Carolina Selects IBM Smarter Cities Solution To Help Modernize And Improve Delivery Of Vital Social Programs To Citizens

ARMONK, N.Y., April 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that the State of South Carolina has selected IBM software, part of IBM's Smarter Cities portfolio, to help modernize its statewide Medicaid eligibility system, transforming the delivery of vital health and social programs to its citizens. The solution is expected to improve program efficiencies while meeting big data challenges and opportunities as the State migrates from a largely paper-based approach to a more open, automated platform to manage eligibility requirements.

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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.

States, like South Carolina, 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 & chief information officer for SCDHHS. "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's decision to implement IBM software was based on the State's strategy to utilize commercial off-the-shelf software and the solution's out-of-the-box capabilities to meet the Medicaid program's eligibility needs. Extending a unique partnership between SCDHHS and Clemson University, Clemson is supporting the State's implementation and will host the solution. SCDHHS, Clemson and IBM are collaborating to develop a flexible environment in a way 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, Industry Solutions, at IBM. "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."

The IBM Curam solution, the major component to South Carolina's new eligibility system, is part of IBM's Smarter Cities portfolio. These capabilities make access to government services easier for the citizen and, more importantly, more effective in achieving desired social outcomes. Several other states, including Maryland and Minnesota, also have selected IBM for similar initiatives.

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