West Virginia awards Medicaid contract to Unisys

West Virginia awards Medicaid contract to Unisys

West Virginia today awarded a contract valued at $61 million to Unisys Corp. to handle Medicaid transactions for the state. The eight-year contract consists of a four-year base period with four one-year option periods.

The company will implement and manage a claims processing system called the Unisys Healthcare Payer Administrative Solutions (Health PAS). Unisys also will help West Virginia comply with the electronic data interchange transaction requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, the company said.

Unisys will handle the workflow of paper and electronic claims, including scanning paper claims into electronic formats; offer training and help desk services; and maintain the systems.

Unisys will process health care claims submitted by about 11,000 health care providers, the company said. The PAS will be hosted on a Unisys ES7000 enterprise server located in Salt Lake City. The system uses Microsoft SQL Server 2000 and BizTalk.

West Virginia has a history of housing its Medicare data facility outside of the state, said Pat Miller, acting director of the Office of Administration and Claims Processing. The state now has a contract with ACS of Dallas to handle its Medicaid transaction processing.

'They housed the mainframe in a data facility in Pittsburgh,' she said. But all the work was handled in West Virginia. The same is true of the Unisys contract, she said, 'but Unisys will do some of the imaging work in Kentucky.'

The Unisys system will help the state reduce health care costs, said Nancy Atkins, commissioner of the West Virginia Bureau for Medical Services.

Because Health PAS is a relational database system, it will be easier to make changes to the data, Miller said. 'Now instead of paying for programming costs, we can just pull up a screen and change an indicator in a field,' she said.

About the Author

Trudy Walsh is a senior writer for GCN.

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