The Veterans Administration (VA) Office of Information & Technology (OI&T) had a need to support the Veterans’ Point-of-Service (VPS) Kiosk Program, whose goal was to deploy remote VPS devices that would allow Veterans to have self-service access and ability to perform a broad range of tasks.
The ASG team stepped in as a partner to Harris Patriot Healthcare Solutions to support the VPS Kiosk program, which was slated to be completed in two phases using an iterative approach to requirement definition, development, and implementation for new capabilities. This approach allowed our team to support the VA’s finalization of a discrete set of requirements, implement VPS software capabilities, and to incrementally roll out devices and software functionalities.
Our team worked to deploy the VPS Point-of-Service devices or “interactive Kiosks” that are small, stand-alone devices that provide information and services on a computer screen and allow a consumer to perform tasks, such as validating information or filling out forms. For this effort the ASG team deployed a VPS solution transitioning to a Software as a Service (SaaS) and Data as a Service (DaaS) solution. The deployed solution entailed the shift of existing hardware and data storage to a cloud-based environment for the purposes of meeting enterprise needs. Additionally, the new architecture allowed for the necessary applications to be deployed in a cloud making on-demand services easily accessible resulting in significantly lowering costs to the VA.
The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) through its Office of Disability and Medical Assessment (DMA) needed support to continuously perform enhancements and maintenance of DMA’s existing Disability Exam templates including implementing medical evidence template requirements specifications. The templates provide on-line interactive forms that are used by thousands of medical examiners to conduct medical assessments, which are further used by Veteran Benefits Administration to calculate the ratings to provide disability benefits to Veterans. The system is also used by Department of Defense, which requires that system maps to both VA and DOD disability regulations and clinical requirements.
ASG conducted complete business process analysis, created process models/diagrams, business artifacts, enhancements, maintenance and technical support. ASG developed standardized, streamlined methods and processes adopted by VHA and its VA partners to facilitate the implementation of the medical evidence forms for the purpose of supporting a disability rating in accordance with the Veterans Affairs Schedule for Rating Disabilities (VASRD). The ASG team implemented medical evidence template requirements specifications (functional, non-functional, and logical data models) for developers; facilitating change management (CM) processes (tracking the implementation of new medical evidence templates or changes to existing templates throughout the full lifecycle from inception through delivery of specific versions), and maintenance of critical business operational objectives.
The Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) manages the authorization, claims processing, and reimbursement for services acquired from Non-VA Healthcare providers through the Chief Business Office Purchased Care (CBOPC) Business Line. The VA had a need to support the CBOPC with a Centralized Services solution and support the division as the single authority responsible for the distribution of payments to community providers for their delivery of health care to Veterans and Veterans’ Family Members, of which they process over 13 million claims annually amounting to billions of dollars in annual payments.
ASG addressed the VA’s challenge by building a Centralized Rules Services (CJS) interface, which enables the business staff with an interface the processing of claims that resulted in improved payment accuracy and operational timeliness without requiring Office of Information Technology (OIT) developer resources, OIT funding, or the involvement of the OIT prioritization process. The rules solution is useable for both existing claims processing models and in-development of a future-state model.
The ASG team conducted analysis of payer logic for the claims management system in which we examined existing rules, and to extract, examine, analyze logic, compare to requirements, propose and make changes, adapt/modify software, and rollout for deployment. Using the IBM Websphere ILOG business rules management application software, the ASG team managed the full lifecycle of healthcare claims adjudication processes, as well as related code sets. ASG developed, tested, and managed the business rules requirements on an ongoing basis as legislation and program integrity changes were released.
For the Rules project ASG has met the VA’s ultimate goal, which is to enable CBOPC government staff, especially from Program Integrity, Policy Management, Insurance Review and Resolution, Informatics, Health Care / Clinical Review, Business Systems Management, to use centralized technical and management resources to support all directorates in the use of automated business rules management systems to support fraud, waste and abuse detection, automate claims processing, and enable policy adjudication without human intervention.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) needed to deploy a content management (CM), knowledge management (KM), and eLearning (eL) solution for that would create, identify, collect, map, manage, secure, and promote sharing of intellectual assets. This solution would enable the VA to share information, raw data, research, templates, and organizational artifacts across Veterans Health Administration (VHA) among its stakeholders, Veterans, users, and partners.
With input from the VA Steering Committee, ASG collaborated with the committee to gather and clarify the details of requirements in order to effectively build a compliant system. We authored user stories, use cases, taxonomy creation (coming up with one version of the truth), and system constraints through interviews, workbooks, and JAD sessions. Our team compiled these into a requirements traceability matrix and worked with VA stakeholders to approve and make sure necessary components were built into the CM, KM, eL system. ASG utilized an agile-based oriented approach for requirements gathering and execution, where we incorporated a phased rollout and associated sprints.
The ASG team provided management of the full project lifecycle—from analysis, design, development, implementation, testing, deployment, training, and on-going maintenance of the project. ASG has a mature project management methodology that leverages our service center experience as well as management controls based on our CMMI (CMMI Level 3), ITIL and ISO 9001:2008 certification and IT Service Management (ITSM) best practices recognized by the HDI. The foundation of our project management approach was based upon CMMI (CMMI Level 3), ITIL and ISO 9001:2008 management controls and guiding principles found in the Project Management Institute’s (PMI’s) Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK).
Using open source tools at no cost of ownership to the VA thus keeping the licensing fees to zero the CM, KM, eL project was designed to be fully compliant with VistA and ESCCS standards. ASG’s design assists the VA in monitoring legislation, regulation, and standards and propagate changes throughout the VA by providing a single authoritative source.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Veteran Health Administration (VHA) needed design and deployment of an affordable, efficient Integrated Universal eLearning (eL) System. The challenge was to design, create, manage, and deploy a content management (CM), knowledge management (KM), and eL solution for the VHA that would create, identify, collect, map, manage, secure, and promote sharing of intellectual assets through an integrated solution that would enable the VA to share information, raw data, research, templates, and organizational artifacts across (VHA) among its users, partners, and Veterans.
ASG collaborated with input from the designated VA Steering Committee to gather and clarify the details of the needed requirements in order to effectively build and deploy the Knowledge Management / eLearning system. The ASG team authored user stories, use cases, taxonomy creation, and system constraints through interviews, workbooks, and JAD sessions. Our team compiled the findings into a requirements traceability matrix, of which were used inworking with VA stakeholders to obtain approvalto make sure necessary components were built into the Knowledge Management/eLearning system. ASG also utilized an agile-oriented approach to execute requirements gatheringin order to better facilitate an incorporated phased system rollout.
The chosen solution was designed and built by ASG to help VHA monitor legislation, regulation, and standards and to promulgate changes throughout the VA by providing a single authoritative source. The integrated Universal Learning System is not only VA compliant, but serves as an example to all of VA of how such a solution can be deployed efficiently and be cost-effective.
As the systems integrator offering a cloud based solution as a service for the Veteran Health Administration (VHA), ASG was tasked to design, create, manage, and deploy a content management (CM), knowledge management (KM), and eLearning (eL) solution that would create, identify, collect, map, manage, secure, and promote sharing of intellectual assets through a solution that would enable the VA to share information, raw data, research, templates, and organizational artifacts among its users, partners, and Veterans. As part of this program the VA also needed a full complement of Help Desk support services.
ASG in turn provided full Help Desk support. ASG responds to trouble reports or change requests (TR/CR Log) encountered by business users that are reported manually or through an Automated Help Desk Application.
ASG provides operations and maintenance support services that are scalable to support an infrastructure capable of growth. ASG manages the hosted environment following Service Level Objectives (SLOs) that include following and meeting or exceeding certain performance metrics for the project. We provide performance metrics, report outages and/or schedule maintenance timeframes through the VA’s Automated Notification Reports (ANR) web application, corrective maintenance performance metrics, help desk performance metrics, and SLO metrics that cover availability, performance and capacity, backup and recovery, security, project management, and corrective maintenance.
ASG also provides Training Support via on-site instructor-led training (ILT) in a train-the-trainer (TTT) format, where we train the admin and super users on the use of the system.
ASG’s sister firm Medpsych Health Services (MPHS), which is an Outpatient Mental Health Clinic (OMHC) that provides services for patients who have Medicare Part A, B services, Medicaid OMHC, Tricare, ChampVA, and private insurance companies. MPHS has 16 clinical practitioners providing mental health management, psychotherapy, addiction and group therapy. Scheduling appointments posed to be a challenge due to the sensitive nature of patients and their unplanned needs for services.
To address this challenge, ASG’s IT operations team analyzed the scheduling pattern; wait-times, cancellation and rescheduling of doctor appointments. The team then built a single portal for Schedulers to view provider availability and preferable patient appointment dates and times to provide a scheduler with the ability to access a feasible appointment time within minutes of interaction with the patient. The portal was then further expanded to allow web-based online scheduling, which improved access to mental health treatment for the patients. Based on our customer feedback and reviews for the scheduling process, we then identified the need to further improve accessibility to care by providing virtual care to the system.
Through ASG’s innovative work, Medpsych is now providing better patient access to mental health treatment via an open source tele-health solution that incorporates an open source content management and e-learning solution that facilitates education of health care contact representatives and patients. This innovative bundle of solutions has improved patient’s access to care and health materials that assist in preventative health care. In addition, ASG’s offices are collocated with our jointly owned clinic, which affords ASG to have a platform to validate research of various solutions that can be applied in a working healthcare setting.
The Veterans Health Agency (VHA) needed expertise in integrating disparate, decentralized applications, policies, and procedures to support their Identity and Access Management (IAM) program. Tasks required were for configuring, management and maintainingan identity management solution that would include installation of industry-standard LDAP COTS solutions to fit the VHA IAM needs, providing single sign-on, PIV authentication, and account authorization.
ASG successfully supported the IAM program by writing a five-year roadmap, which fulfills the goals of sixteen major security initiatives and directives issued by the VA Secretary, OMB, and the White House on IAM requirements to meet HSPD-12 regulation requirements, establish authoritative data sources for identity, and implement unique identifiers for verifying patient identity that can be used for interoperability between e-Exchanges, systems within VA, and outside partners.
Our team provisioned accounts in LDAP and SAML, automated legacy security control input, activity log capture, and implemented manual processes creating a reusable, uniform, consolidated security & access control environment.
The ASG team utilized IAM best-practices in meeting NIST and OMB security requirements and that the program is HSPD-12 compliant and in achieving successful outcomes for Patient Identity/PIV Card management, physical and logical access through various directory services and certificate based token support. ASG achieved overall customer satisfaction by reducing the number of user logins from nine to one single user login access, thus increasing security and enabling users to manage a single sign-on instead of nine separate user IDs and passwords. Because single sign-on is more secure than multiple access, the improved efficiency lowered security risks throughout the VHA enterprise and the improved efficiency met VA’s CRISP requirements resulting in lowered risk, and increased customer satisfaction.