Cloudy Days in Iowa But Sunny Skies in Michigan

It was raining most of Tuesday in Des Moines, Iowa. The clouds may have put a damper on attendees for the World’s Largest State Fair, but had no effect on the crowd at this year’s Medicaid Enterprise Systems Conference (MESC), where a completely different kind of cloud was under discussion. MESC is an annual conference where industry leaders meet to talk about the future of their services. On day two of the event, CNSI presented its ground-breaking, cloud-based Medicaid Management Information System (MMIS), built for Michigan and Illinois, as a case study. CNSI Senior Director of Operations & Infrastructure John Harding, joined by representatives from the State of Michigan and software company Oracle, outlined how Michigan, Illinois and futures states will be able to leverage this cutting-edge platform:

Reduce operational time (i.e., cut down on the procurement process);
Shorten implementation time (i.e., go live in four to six months);
Eliminate duplicative federal compliance costs (i.e., save state and tax payer dollars);
Lower costs for implementation and ongoing maintenance (i.e., save long-term dollars); and
Leverage pre-certified, proven technology reducing overall risk.

With Michigan processing 2.4 million beneficiaries and Illinois processing 3.5 million (more than 8 percent of the total number of Medicaid beneficiaries in the U.S.), the multi-level savings add up to better health and better care, at lower costs. The panelists also covered lessons learned as part of this new approach to Medicaid systems implementation, including starting early, identifying commonalities, and using a phase/modular approach. More details as to the “how” will be covered in Wednesday’s MESC session, “Michigan as a Service (MAAS).”

The weather report is turning around here in Des Moines and we’re looking forward to more informative, engaging sessions in the days to come. But for now, maybe we’ll track down a third kind of cloud we keep hearing so much about, the famous State Fair cotton candy.

What do you think? Do you think the Cloud solution could work in your state? Tell us what your thoughts by finding us on Twitter @CNSICorp. If you need a refresher on what the cloud is, or how it can be applied to health care, check out our past blogs: Cloud Computing 101 and Cloud Computing 201: The Health Cloud.


This blog entry was written by Amanda Moskowitz, CNSI’s new marketing and communications manager. She will write about industry trends, health care policy, and essentially anything innovative. Amanda brings with her nearly a decade of private, government, and non-profit communications experience, and two years performing stand-up comedy, which allows her to infuse both humility and humor into her writing. She believes that whatever the technology, there will always be a need to share the words written in our mind. Feel free to contact Amanda at