We Built What People Needed: The Work of SIS Over the Last 20 Years

We began as problem-solvers. Our first challenge was made tangible by Sam Karp at the California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF); he dropped a twenty-eight-page paper application on the desk before the CHCF’s board and said, “Go ahead. Try to fill it out.” It was the lengthy application for medical coverage via California’s new Children’s Health Insurance Program. That was in 1998.

 
Hear our founders and long-time leaders reflect on the origin and successes of Social Interest Solutions
 

At the time, applicants were required to make multiple in-person visits to agency and medical offices to successfully apply for health insurance for their children. Surely, CHCF thought, we can make this process more efficient and accessible to determine eligibility and enrollment? With that, CHCF and its public and private-sector partners – many of whom became SIS’s founding staff – began development of the first-in-the-nation web-based eligibility and enrollment tool for a public health coverage program. They worked relentlessly to help build an online verification tool with the first e-signature capability for the public sector. In 2001, they launched the Health-e-App pilot in San Diego County, and soon thereafter the State of California implemented Health-e-App statewide. Health-e-App accomplished exactly what SIS’s principals set out to do: create a simple, straightforward way to connect people to the healthcare they needed.

 

Health-e-App reduced the average time needed to fill out the application for healthcare coverage from 97 to 7 minutes. In 2003 we launched One-e-App, providing one interface to determine eligibility for a wide range of programs. One-e-App has screened more than 10 million individuals for coverage, and has submitted more than 67 million program applications on their behalf. In the nearly two-decades since launching the Health-e-App pilot, the SIS team has brought curiosity and determination to the work as we build technology solutions, advise policymakers, and troubleshoot roadblocks to efficient eligibility, enrollment, and service delivery.

 

This timeline shares some of what we’ve accomplished:

 
CHCF
1998-99
California Health Care Foundation streamlines 28-page paper application
Health-e-App
2001
Health-e-App pilot launch
One-e-App
2003
One-e-App pilot launch
Health-e-App
2005
Incorporation of the Center to Promote Healthcare Access
One-e-App
2008
Launch of Health-e-Arizona Plus (HEAplus)
Affordable Care Act
2009
Drafting of section 1561 of the ACA
SIS
2010
Began doing business as Social Interest Solutions
2010
Launch of Health-e-App Public Access (HEA-PA) – Statewide application to California’s Healthy Families Program
RCHC
2012
Social Interest Solutions launches One-e-App Mobile pilot program with the Redwood Community Health Coalition
ALTCS
2015
SIS is selected to develop Arizona’s Long Term Care Solution, which helps people navigate financial, medical, and practical considerations required to help seniors and people with disabilities to access ongoing services at a nursing-facility-level of care.
CBPP
2016
SIS partners with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities to develop a guide to selecting an online application for free/reduced-price school meals.
Linkages
2017
SIS publishes first paper on cross-enrollment opportunities, Opportunities to Streamline Enrollment Across Public Benefit Programs.
One Degree
2018
SIS partners with One Degree to develop a screening tool that allows California residents to determine if they’re likely eligible for CA health insurance and food assistance programs in less than three minutes.

We are proud of how our work over the last twenty years has helped our partners fulfill a shared purpose. We’ve gone deep into the details, placing experts in software development alongside public health systems administrators. We’ve consulted on language used in the Affordable Care Act and provided quality technology tools to support states and counties in delivering food, healthcare, and economic support to their communities.

 

In our offices, lawyers troubleshoot with technologists and social workers team up with designers. We remain a team of problem-solvers committed to economic, social, and physical well-being for all. Recently, we’ve been hard at work strategizing about how we can best connect people to the resources they need in the years ahead. What purpose-driven innovations do you think have improved access to economic, social, and physical well-being? Please, share our timeline and join us in reflecting on all that we have accomplished together as we step into the next twenty years.