EIS-R Update- Making Progress!

Submitted by Clay Butcher on July 22, 2013 - 11:34am

July 19, 2013

The EIS-R project continues to move at a rapid pace, and we are on track to meet our October 1st deadline for Release 1a.  In our effort to keep you abreast of the project status, this update provides insight on key implementation activities.





Delivery Date for Release 1a




Independent System Test




Acceptance Test (UAT) Systems Operations



– ARIES Leads Group #1




– ARIES Leads Group #2










‘Go Live’ Operational Assessment



ARIES Leads:

As we approach the Go-Live for Release 1a, we have established an Implementation Team to focus on communication, knowledge sharing, training, and support. As mentioned in our previous update, we have identified ARIES Leads to serve as our implementation champions! 
(See previous update for information about the role of the ARIES Leads: http://dpaweb.hss.state.ak.us/node/478) An orientation will be conducted on July 31st in Anchorage with all of the ARIES Leads.  The topics of discussion include:

·         EIS-R Project Overview and Status

·         Overview of the Implementation Approach

·         Discussion on ARIES Leads Roles and Responsibilities

·         Overview of ACA Policy Changes for Release 1a

The listing of the ARIES Leads is provided in the attached list: ARIES leads. (pdf)

Answers to your Questions!

We know that you have questions, and the Project Team has a plan for answering them.  First, we are developing a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).  The FAQs will be updated on a regular basis and posted on the DPA Web.  As new questions surface, the project team will work to update the DPA Web and facilitate communication across all offices. Be on the lookout for the first set of FAQs.  

Additionally, a team will be visiting the field offices in August.  The team will consist of representatives of DPA leadership, Field Operations, Staff Development and Training, and Policy.  They will provide an update on the Project, an overview of the upcoming policy changes, and provide an opportunity for personnel to ask questions. The FAQs will also be updated with information pertaining to questions asked during the field office visits.       


Training for ARIES is an important component in preparing DPA staff to use the new system.  The Project Team and Deloitte have been working together closely to prepare a training strategy.  The strategy will leverage existing training tools and delivery approaches used by DPA’s Staff Development and Training section.     Additional training information is provided below:

Who:    Eligibility Technicians, Office Assistants, Navigators, Systems Operations Staff, Policy Staff, Quality Assurance Staff, Program Integrity Staff, Security Staff, 3rd Party Agencies, and other State Staff.  

What:    Training will be delivered with two approaches:

·         Computer Based Training (CBT)

·         Virtual Instructor Led Training (VILT)

Additional training resources will also be available:

·         Exercises

·         Online User Guides

·         Training Environment Access

·         Frequently Asked Questions from Training

·         Live Moderated Question and Answer Sessions-post Go-Live

·         Help Text

·         Training Evaluation

Duration:  Completion of the CBTs will take no longer than 21 hours.

Why:   ARIES Release 1a will ‘go live’ on October 1, 2013. Training will help prepare us to serve our clients using ARIES. 

When:  Using the ‘Just-In-Time’ concept, training will be available to DPA staff no later than September 13th. 

Where: You will not have to leave your desk to receive training. Training material will be downloaded via Blackboard and conducted on office computers. 

You can expect more details on the training program in the upcoming weeks.

What is actually changing?

ARIES will introduce two new concepts of operation:  Self Service Portal (SSP) and Worker Portal (WP).  The SSP will offer a new method for clients to apply for Medicaid after October 1st.  They will access the SSP via the MyAlaska website.  The WP will be used by DPA staff to access ARIES.  More information will be forthcoming about the use of ARIES in conjunction with EIS. 

There will be policy changes as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  An overview of these changes will be addressed during field office visits, and as part of the Release 1a Training Plan.  Additional information and resources will also be provided as we approach Go-Live.  The goal is to provide you with as much information as possible to help you understand how this policy affects the clients we serve.

System Update:

Deloitte is almost finished customizing ARIES based upon the requirements provided by the Project Team.  As with any technology project, ARIES needs to be tested to make sure it will achieve the business intent of serving our clients.  A detailed overview of the ARIES testing was provided in the previous update (http://dpaweb.hss.state.ak.us/node/478).  Deloitte is on schedule to deliver ARIES Release 1a to DPA on August 12th.  The Project Team and Qualis are busy preparing for User Acceptance Testing.   


The Project Team received some outstanding submissions for the ARIES logo contest.  There are some exceptional artists in DPA!  Unfortunately, the artwork submitted for the contest had too much detail for the ARIES logo.  The logo should clearly visible when displayed at a size of less than one inch in diameter.  The Project Team asked for assistance from one of the Department’s graphic artist, Glenn Harvey.  The logo provided below was selected by the Project Team and approved by our Division Director, Ron Kreher.

ARIES is on track for GO-LIVE on October 1,