Thursday, April 13, 2006

Spin Spin Spin

Opinion: Accenture Proud of Work on CHIP
San Angelo Standard Times4/11/2006

Your March 31 editorial, ''Management problems hampering vital CHIP,'' inaccurately places the blame on Accenture for families impacted by the CHIP eligibility and enrollment processes. Your readers should know that in the majority of cases, clients were dropped off of CHIP rolls as a result of not returning required verification information or not returning the renewal application at all.

As part of the enrollment process, Accenture contacts applicants directly with phone calls and direct mail as a courtesy reminder of information needed before the enrollment deadline. Established State policies govern the rules surrounding eligibility and enrollment in the CHIP program. We are just responsible for their implementation.

Your broad allegations that ''thousands'' of Texans have gone months without coverage are entirely unfounded. In the instance that you cite, where letters were not sent to families advising them of the required fee in their case, we worked with the Health and Human Services Commission to extend the benefits to those families while we worked through the clerical issues.
Your allegation that Accenture has simply ''lost'' information is equally ridiculous and has no basis in fact.

We have a proven process for capturing all inbound correspondence that includes imaging everything, including the front and back of the envelope the correspondence came in to ensure we have all the information provided by the family. Every document we receive is processed and entered into our tracking system on the same day we receive it. The 45,000 dental cards you mention were sent by an entirely different vendor under a separate contract with HHSC. Even in that case, no benefits were lost.

We are proud of the work that we are doing in support of the CHIP program, and we are committed to its mission of providing affordable health care to Texas children who might otherwise not have access to it. In fact, March saw the highest single-month CHIP enrollment since the program's inception; more than 301,000 children are now enrolled in the program. We are working with families on a case-by-case basis to investigate issues brought to our attention. We are taking the necessary actions to enroll qualified Texans if they are entitled and eligible to participate in the program.

We have processes in place to deal with eligibility disputes. We encourage anyone who is experiencing problems or has knowledge of individuals who are experiencing problems with CHIP eligibility and enrollment to use this process so we can work to quickly solve the problems. The sooner we know of issues, the sooner we can resolve them and recommend changes to improve the overall system.

James McAvoy, Accenture

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