A unique, first-time feature at MESC 2021
Getting back to business after longing for a return to pre-pandemic life was a collective feeling which 1000+ in-person attendees at the Medicaid Enterprise System Conference (MESC) this felt this year. This year’s conference was hosted by the New England States Consortium Systems Organization (NESCSO) at the Boston Convention Center the week of August 9.
MESC facilitated an integrated and coordinated conversation between Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), State Medicaid program stakeholders and Medicaid Management Information System (MMIS) Vendors to identify their symbiotic needs and create a delivery system that positively influences health outcomes ensures efficient use of funding.
I attended a session hosted by National Association of State Purchasing Officers (NASPO) with representation from several states. Here, members were soliciting support for states to sponsor additional MMIS solution offering through NASPO, as its been used by states for general procurement for decades. Also, for consortium procurement of solution and services by states in support of their MMIS modernization to achieve modularity as described by CMS MITA 3.0.
What this means for technology vendors
States and vendors share a common mission – to deliver healthcare services which improves the lives and health of the covered population all while delivering care at reduced costs. They met at MESC to discuss how the changing landscape of CMS Certification will affect procurements and new procurement modalities (e.g., NASPO).
The new CMS directive for states to utilize modular solution offerings to modernize their legacy MMIS has massively shaped the vendor landscape for MESC. Historically, conferences were geared toward large suppliers who provided monolithic MMIS solutions. The current landscape and technology trend is on the use of smaller “best-of-breed” specialty module solutions, providing platforms for new and smaller suppliers to present their specialty solutions.
Participation in MESC is anticipated to grow given that most states are embarking on multi-year journeys for modernization and replacement of legacy MMIS systems. Wipro’s Enterprise Medicaid as a Service (EMaaS) Core Claims Module is one of the five qualified and empaneled offerings to states through NASPO. Our booth at the conference was strategically (and perfectly!) located in front of the food booth – arguably the highest foot traffic aisle!
Where is the focus at MESC 2022
States looking for technology solutions that are cost effective, quick to market, and meet everchanging business goals is not only tough, it is extremely difficult! Moreover, the technology shift from large legacy monolithic systems to commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) to a multi-vendor modular “best-of-the-breed” MMIS solution has been more challenging than anticipated. There is going to be a huge focus on data and analytics geared towards increasing operational and outcome efficiency in the future.
I learned that negotiation and open communication need to occur so that requirements that are impactful can be delivered and measured accordingly – making sure that the State Medicaid Agency receives the intended benefit from its investment (both time and money).
I look forward to attending MESC 2022 and helping state Medicaid agencies make the most of their technology investment in a world of increasing compliance and shrinking budgets. See you there!