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In this week’s Friday Five, MAXIMUS is reading about the benefits and challenges of addressing social determinants of health (SDOH) with technology, the federal government’s new focus on data and automation, oversight of home and community-based long-term care, and our job skills partnership with a community college. 

1. Investments in social determinants will pay off, with better outcomes and value

As much as 90% of a person’s health status could be determined by social and economic factors. While important, a focus on identifying and resolving social determinants of health (SDOH) can be labor and time intensive. This Healthcare IT News article reports on ways technology can help and warns of challenges, such as interoperability, that must be addressed. 

2. Treasury Dept. to overhaul CFO role with focus on data-driven decision making

The Treasury Department has a new plan to improve the customer experience. According to Federal News Network, the plan focuses on a holistic customer experience; and will increase how they collect, use and analyze data. It also includes recasting the role of CFO away from creating budgets and clean audit reports and toward helping make data-driven decisions. The agency also will introduce automation technologies designed to improve both customer and employee experience.

3. Biggest hurdle for RPA? Weichert says ‘human-technology divide’ proves challenging

What’s holding back the federal government from moving forward with robotic process automation (RPA)? According to Margaret Weichert, acting director of the Office for Personnel Management, many employees are concerned that RPA may cost them their jobs. The Federal News Network reports on her challenge to get employees to see RPA as something that will improve, not threaten, their jobs. Overall, RPA is expected to help reduce backlogs and improve federal customer service.

4. MAXIMUS announces partnership with Craven Community College

Earlier this week, MAXIMUS announced a new partnership with Craven Community College in North Carolina. Reported by Executive Gov, the partnership will involve MAXIMUS referring parents to the college’s Job Readiness Boot Camp. MAXIMUS currently runs the county’s Child Support Enforcement Program. The hope is that helping parents develop job skills will improve employment rates and adherence to child support payments.

5. Senators probe Medicaid managed care, LTSS programs

The Senate Finance Committee has requested information about Medicaid managed care and long-term services and supports (LTSS) programs from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and external review organizations. According to McKnight’s, the request comes as more LTSS services are being provided in home or community-based settings. The Committee wants assurances that despite these changes to the program, CMS and the states are maintaining proper oversight.