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NASUA’s Aging Information Management Systems Study. Jim Whaley, NASUA Rob Ficke, Westat Robin Ritter, Westat. Overview/Background. Older Americans Act/NAPIS reporting Accuracy Burden Capacity to meet reporting requirements Use of data Program operations Quality Assurance Accountability

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Nasua s aging information management systems study

NASUA’s Aging Information Management Systems Study

Jim Whaley, NASUA

Rob Ficke, Westat

Robin Ritter, Westat

Overview background

  • Older Americans Act/NAPIS reporting

    • Accuracy

    • Burden

    • Capacity to meet reporting requirements

  • Use of data

    • Program operations

    • Quality Assurance

    • Accountability

    • Planning

    • Management

Purpose of study
Purpose of Study

Identify ways to:

  • Improve efficiency and effectiveness of reporting

  • Reduce burden of information collection across multiple funding streams

  • Eliminate the need for consumers and caregivers to repeatedly provide identifying information to multiple service providers

  • Reduce expense of reporting systems fragmentation by capitalizing on network economies of scale

Process methodology
Process & Methodology

  • Guided by Project Advisory Committee

  • Conducted telephone survey of 49 SUAs

  • Selected 15 states for follow-up survey

  • Selected 5 states for case studies of best practices

Content of questionnaire
Content of Questionnaire

  • Capabilities & Functions

  • Technical Aspects

  • Policies

  • Computation of client counts Categories of data collected

  • Satisfaction with information system

Capabilities functions
Capabilities & Functions

  • Client tracking

  • Case management

  • Provider management

  • Financial management

  • Summary Reporting

Technical aspects
Technical Aspects

  • Hardware

  • Software

  • Type of access ─ client server; web-based

  • How AAAs & providers submit data to the state

Categories of data collected
Categories of data collected

  • Client vs. summary level

  • Registered vs. non-registered services

  • Demographics

  • Health & functional status

  • OAA Services

  • Reason for leaving program

Policy implications
Policy Implications

  • How has SUA standardized collection and reporting of data

  • How do state government information systems policies affect SUA

  • Barriers vs. facilitators for information systems development

Satisfaction with information system
Satisfaction with Information System

  • Cost

  • Ease of use and modification

  • Flexibility

  • Report generation and ad hoc queries

  • Customer support

  • User Training

  • Documentation

Degree of program integration
Degree of Program Integration

  • OAA Title IIIB, C1, C2

  • OAA Title III D ─ Disease Prevention/Health Promotion

  • OAA Title III E ─ Family Caregiver Support

  • Long-Term Care Ombudsman (NORS)

  • Elder Rights

  • Senior Community Service Employment

  • State Health Insurance Programs (SHIP)

  • Medicaid Home & Community-Based Waiver

  • Social Service Block Grant

  • Nutrition Services Incentive Program

  • Aging & Disability Resource Center funds

Criteria for follow up best practices
Criteria for Follow-Up/Best Practices

  • Vertical Integration: AAAs/providers using same system as SUA

  • Horizontal Integration: Same software used across multiple funding streams

  • Unduplicated client counts: Accuracy; based on individual clients

  • Technology innovations: Bar-coded IDs for client registration

  • Type of information systems: In-house vs. commercial systems

  • Diversity: Geographic, urban/rural, single state-PSA

Preliminary findings
Preliminary Findings

  • Use of information systems at SUA level is in flux

  • Degrees of vertical & horizontal integration

  • Use of technology for client registration is minimal

  • Success with commercial software dependent on tailoring documentation and user training

Facilitators important to information systems development

Available funding

Cooperation from AAAs/providers


High costs

Information systems development mandate








Facilitators Important to Information Systems Development

Special use software for supporting access to services
Special Use Software for Supporting Access to Services

  • Most SUAs integrate client intake, assessment, and tracking

  • Separate computer applications often support information & referral/assistance

  • Only about 1/3 (32%) of SUAs integrate their I & R/A functions within their core MIS

Reasons for separate mis systems
Reasons for Separate MIS Systems

  • Wide selection of I & R/A software products

  • Superiority of special use I & R/A software

  • Existence of well-established I & R/A procedures that SUAs are reluctant to change

Example of i a r systems integration
Example of I & A/R Systems Integration

  • Area Office on Aging of Northwestern Ohio (Toledo) uses Synergy’s SAMS Beacon software in conjunction with its existing web-based consumer information system (Synergy built the interface)

  • Older persons, their families, and agency staff can use this system to identify community facilities and services to address their needs

Implications for adrcs
Implications for ADRCs

  • Coordinating and integrating service system access software, such as I & R/A, with service delivery applications within state programs on aging is difficult and often does not occur

  • ADRC information is not being integrated with information systems that support Title III of the Older Americans Act

  • This suggests that identifying or developing I&R/A computer applications that coordinate and integrate aging and disability program access may be problematic as well

Next steps nasua study
Next Steps NASUA Study

  • Produce and disseminate written report

Contact information
Contact Information


  • Jim Whaley, Director, Center for the Advancement of State Community Service Programs

    • 202-898-2578, ext. 140



  • Rob Ficke, Senior Study Director

    • 301-294-2835


  • Robin Ritter, Research Associate

    • 240-314-5804