How old is the Medicaid Management Information System (MMIS) in Illinois? "Our joke is that the grandchild of someone who worked on creating our MMIS is now in long-term care," said Ivan Handler, who recently left his position as CIO of the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services to become CTO of the Governor’s Office of Health Information Technology, where he will work on the state’s health information exchange.
Traditionally MMIS has been a single mammoth system that handles a series of functions related to Medicaid claims processing and administrative information retrieval. But Illinois’ legacy mainframe system is buckling under the weight of ongoing federal health reforms — and it must be replaced soon, Handler explained. The longtime employees who have worked on the system are starting to retire, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find COBOL programmers to write "Band-Aids" to provide new functionality, such as a national provider identity requirement.
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