National Governor’s Association and NGA Center for Best Practices

10/28/2004

Washington System Connects Veterans with Benefits, Saves Revenue

Contact: Brendan Krause
Health Division

A Washington state project aimed at connecting veterans with entitled benefits could save the state more than $22 million in Medicaid and other costs, according to state officials. The project created the Public Assistance Reporting Information System (PARIS) - a pool of data from participating states and the federal government that helps veterans get the benefits they deserve and prevents clients from drawing duplicate benefits from two states. The project has been credited with saving more than $1 million for state taxpayers already, and it could save the state more than $22 million. The project has identified more than 3,000 veterans who need assistance.

PARIS has the potential to save more for both the State of Washington and other states that choose to join the pool to share information about benefits provided to their citizens. As other states join, data matches are run against their beneficiaries to be certain that beneficiaries are not currently enrolled in multiple states' programs. Such systems could be particularly beneficial to neighboring states as beneficiaries might change state residences long before public programs discover this change.