ARMY NATIONAL GUARD CENTRALIZED CREDENTIALING PROGRAM WINS EXCALIBUR AWARD
The Army National Guard’s centralized credentialing program was awarded the prestigious Surgeon General’s Excalibur Award at the Military Health System Conference held last week in Washington, DC.
Tenon Consulting began working with the ARNG in 2006 to develop this benchmark program and has led the effort from concept through national implementation. The ARNG credentialing program was selected by the Army Surgeon General’s office from a pool of 22 applicants. Evaluation criteria included program sustainability, system-wide replication potential, improvements in efficiency, increased quality, and enhanced resource management. Tenon’s solution design consists of a scalable operation leveraging collaborative public-private partnerships, proven commercial technology, and healthcare industry best practices. Furthermore, the program development and implementation effort was completed on plan, on budget, and has either met or exceeded targeted performance objectives throughout the deployment process.
Military Credentialing Solutions, Inc. (MCS) manages the end-to-end credentialing process to ensure quality standards, timelines, and customer service objectives. MCS effectively coordinates the necessary interactions with the ARNG leadership, providers, third party stakeholders, and program partners while providing visibility into the status of individual and aggregate files as they move through each step of the credentialing process.
The program is leveraging the CAQH® Universal Provider Datasource® (UPD) to collect and maintain provider credentials information. Serving as the industry-standard, the UPD electronic provider data system is currently utilized by nearly 800,000 providers.
“UPD is minimizing the paperwork burden for providers, while streamlining administrative processes for ARNG,” said Sorin Davis, director of marketing and business development, CAQH. UPD users submit and manage their credentialing data using this secure, simple to use, web-based utility. Providers maintain total control of their information and can authorize access for insurers, hospitals, and other healthcare operations. UPD also provides real-time monitoring of sanctions information reported from over 400 sanctions sources nationwide.
“Our primary objective in developing this solution was to leverage existing best practices and capabilities within both the public and private sectors. UPD provides a standard, low-cost, and reliable system for allowing providers to maintain their credentials information in one place and disseminate it to the various entities requiring that information. This now includes the Army National Guard,” stated Anthony D. Begando, Tenon’s CEO. The ARNG credentialing program represents the first time the military has electronically collected and actively monitored credentials information in this manner.
Anthem Credentialing Services, Inc. (ACSI) supports the program by conducting the prime source verification of required credentials data. ACSI is the credentials verification organization (CVO) for the WellPoint family of companies and brings extensive credentialing industry experience and best practices into the ARNG’s credentialing program. Following the award ceremony, ACSI’s Christina McGovern noted these strengths, “This engagement allows us to leverage our extensive private sector expertise to support the military in this very important area. The work we do contributes directly to the agility and readiness of medical staff deployment through our ongoing verification and monitoring of credentials. This is critical to supporting our troops and we are proud to be a part of it.”
Working together, these organizations have developed a world-class operation that has transformed the credentialing activities for the ARNG. “We are honored to have had the opportunity to develop this program for the Army National Guard. We believe the solution can serve as a template for similar needs throughout the military, in various homeland security support functions, and with other large healthcare institutions,” noted Mr. Begando.