Deloitte will provide a $27 million credit to Rhode Island taxpayers to cover unanticipated costs of the UHIP roll out. The credit will cover a temporary hiring surge at the Rhode Island Department of Human Services (DHS) to address the backlog of pending applications, as well as other State personnel expenses related to UHIP. It will also pay for contracted services expenses for FY17 and through the end of the first quarter in FY18.
"Rhode Island taxpayers deserve a well-functioning system that they paid for. I've spoken weekly with Deloitte's CEO and am heartened that the firm is making a good faith effort to offset the taxpayers' unanticipated expenses," said Governor Raimondo. "Since February, we have reduced the number of pending non-medical applications by half. The number of pending SNAP applications is down nearly 70 percent, and lobby wait times are the lowest they've been since UHIP launched. There is still a great deal of work to do, but today's agreement is another positive sign that significant progress is being made."
In February, a detailed assessment released by DHS identified significant issues with the UHIP system, and concluded that it was not ready at go-live. Governor Gina M. Raimondo pledged to hold Deloitte accountable and is currently withholding payment to Deloitte until the system is stabilized. The $27 million credit is not a final settlement. It is a voluntary payment from Deloitte and does not amount to an admission of liability or a waiver of any potential legal claims from either the State or Deloitte. In addition, the State's right to seek recovery for other unanticipated costs, expenses and impacts arising out of the project are preserved, including expenses that may arise as the stabilization process moves along.
Deloitte also has added over 130 staff to the team in Rhode Island since February. In a progress report released on April 26, Acting DHS Director Eric J. Beane noted that the increased commitment from Deloitte has been a factor in the improvement in customer service since February, along with significant new state resources and improved project management practices.
"We have made progress in recent weeks, but we must stay focused to ensure that UHIP is fully functioning as quickly as possible," said acting DHS Director Eric J. Beane. "The credit from Deloitte will allow us to move forward together and focus solely on fixing the critical outstanding issues. We will continue to hold ourselves and our vendor accountable."
The progress report shows pending applications have stabilized and are trending downward, pending expedited SNAP applications have been reduced by nearly 70 percent and pending Child Care Assistance Program applications have been reduced by more than half.
"I remain encouraged by the progress we are experiencing, but we are not out of the woods yet," said Beane. "Our clients, partners, and workforce are still experiencing challenges with the UHIP system. We will continue to work with urgency with Deloitte to fix UHIP and to take action to ensure Rhode Islanders receive the level of service they expect and deserve from DHS. That is our highest priority."
Other highlights from the update include:
• The number of pending non-medical applications has been nearly cut in half over the last month, falling from a high of 5,500 in March to some 2,800 today
• The number of pending SNAP applications is down nearly 70 percent on average – with the backlog of expedited applications falling from just under 1,000 in February to some 300 today; regular applications are down to 700 from 2,100 in February
• Pending Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) applications have been cut in half – down from nearly 700 at April's start to 310 today
• Lobby wait times are at about 75 minutes in March, the lowest recorded average since the system launched
Read the full report by going to related links.