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EDS Scores Major Contract Renewal

The State of California's Healthy Families program has extended its business-processes outsourcing contract with EDS.

Plano, TX-based EDS has landed a $64 million, 18-month extension and expansion to a business-processes outsourcing contract with the State of California's Healthy Families program. Through the contract EDS will provide support to new applicants, in addition to the nearly 450,000 children already enrolled in the program. With an additional one-year option, the contract is potentially worth up to $118 million.

EDS manages the enrollment and maintenance of the Healthy Families program membership, processes all transactions with carriers and provides customer services, including automated print communications, distribution of enrollment material and call-center services in 11 languages, according to Dick Callahan, EDS client executive. The contract expansion involves a new training program for community-based organizations through which EDS will train 20,000 state-certified application assistants to facilitate enrollment, Callahan says.

"The Healthy Families program is very similar to a private sector operation and that's what makes it exciting for EDS," says Callahan. "It's a convergence of a public sector program that looks like a private sector business."

EDS maintains contracts with 30 carriers and anticipates a massive expansion of enrollment from 450,000 to between 600,000 and 900,000 members since the program has begun to enroll adults, Callahan asserts.

EDS has completed the pilot of an Internet-based enrollment which is planned to be up-and-running by early fall, according to Callahan. Applicants will be able to "key into a form and within seconds, if they send income verification and proof of citizenship, then we'll forward eligibility just as we would with a paper application," says Callahan.

Healthy Families is the nation's largest Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), a federal program that provides subsidized medical insurance to children whose families do not qualify for Medicaid but cannot afford private medical insurance. The Healthy Families program assists families in acquiring insurance for their children from one of 30 contracted health, dental and vision insurance carriers, including California Blue Cross, PacifiCare, LA Care, Delta and Kaiser. The insurance is purchased at market premium rates and paid through federal and state funds, and an adjusted contribution from the parents of the covered child, according to Callahan.

Anthony O'Donnell has covered technology in the insurance industry since 2000, when he joined the editorial staff of Insurance & Technology. As an editor and reporter for I&T and the InformationWeek Financial Services of TechWeb he has written on all areas of information ... View Full Bio

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