Michigan Wins $9.2 Million In Federal Medicaid Funds

Contact: T.J. Bucholz (517) 241-2112
Agency: Community Health

February 23, 2007

Michigan Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced that the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) has received more than $9.2 million in federal funding to support the state's continued efforts to enhance health information technology.

"This funding will continue to help us streamline our Medicaid program and save taxpayer dollars as we work to provide critical health care services to Michigan citizens," Granholm said.

The first $5.2 million grant will expedite the credentialing process for health professionals, facilities, and providers by building a database that is accessible by all state organizations that maintain licenses. Creating a single database will reduce the time required to verify credentials for health care providers, and will generate a significant savings for Michigan.

"While we have an obligation to collect and verify credentials, the state-and our partners at the local level-could achieve a significant cost savings across the board if payers, facilities, and providers only have to go through the same process once," said Janet Olszewski, MDCH Director. "This new grant will use a One Source process for certifying or licensing members of the health care community."

Since July of 2006, MDCH's Bureau of Health Professions has managed the licensing process for 21 health professions, or a total of 375,000 health professional licenses, in Michigan. Each health profession has a board that governs the licensing requirements for that profession.

The second grant-worth $3.92 million-will allow MDCH to expand its efforts to automate and update its extensive birth records database so Department of Health and Human Service (MDHHS) workers can verify Medicaid eligibility with increased accuracy.

When completed, the database for the MDHHS Medicaid eligibility intake worker interface will improve birth fact and citizenship validation from 70 percent to more than 90 percent. The system also will link birth and death records, so efforts to provide a false identity to MDHHS workers would almost be eliminated. The system also should raise MDHHS online case verification rates, Olszewski said.