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In this week’s Friday Five, Maximus is reading about Medicaid block grant guidance, using SNAP benefits for online orders, the challenge of integrating social determinants into healthcare, government cybersecurity, and state priorities for IT.

1. Overview of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ new Medicaid block grant guidance    

Is your state considering applying for a Medicaid block grant by using a Section 1115 waiver? Read this first: The National Academy for State Health Policy has drafted an overview of CMS’ block grant guidance, including eligible populations, financial structure, benefits, and more.

2. Walmart, Amazon extend SNAP test to Washington 

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients in Washington state have a new option for purchasing groceries. NACS reports that both Walmart and Amazon have extended their SNAP pilot projects, allowing online purchases of groceries using SNAP. Alabama, Iowa, Maryland, Nebraska, New Jersey and Oregon will eventually join the pilot project, with a national rollout anticipated. 

3. ACOs are struggling to integrate social services with medical care, findings show 

Despite a recognition that social determinants have a major impact on overall health, affordable care organizations are struggling to address them. Healthcare Finance reports ACOs lacked information about patients’ needs and resources within the community. As obtaining and analyzing SDOH data remains a challenge, AI may be able to help conquer some of the hurdles presented by such complex data.

4. CISA touts CDM, CyberStat as key cyber compliance tools 

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) plans to use continuous diagnostics and mitigation (CDM) and CyberStat as tools to validate agency self-reports on cybersecurity compliance, according to FCW. The expansion of the existing programs comes in response to gaps found by the GAO and is designed to help standardize how agencies monitor networks and data against threats.

5. What’s next for state and local government IT in 2020? 

In this podcast, StateScoop predicts state and local government IT trends for 2020. Their findings: Election security and mobile voting are expected to be major topics of conversation, while AI, privacy concerns, and cybersecurity will also be areas of focus.