Thursday, May 31, 2012

Improving access to benefits

Millions of people do not receive the federal benefits for which they qualify, partly due to burdensome procedures, which can also increase administrative costs and interfere with accurate eligibility determination. Traditionally, eligibility determination requires a consumer to apply for assistance in person and present supporting documentation, then the caseworker processes the application and evaluates the documents. Innovative states and federal policymakers have been moving to modern ways to determine eligibility. These new approaches use existing data sources and information technology—information from outside the one-on-one consumer and caseworker interaction—to lower administrative costs, reduce the burdens on consumers, improve access to benefits, and strengthen program integrity.  A new report from the Coalition for Access and Opportunity details these approaches.

Source:  Center for Law and Social Policy, May 2012, Moving-to-21st-Century-Public-Benefits

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