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Improving the Efficiency and Effectiveness of Public Programs

Public programs that operate effectively and efficiently better serve children and families and also improve the overall environment for the staff. The private sector has successfully utilized quality improvement theories and principles to improve business processes and customer service in the automobile and manufacturing industries. These same methods are being used in many hospitals and in the United States military. The Southern Institute on Children and Families has adapted these quality improvement theories and principles to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of processes within public benefit programs and services for children and families.

The Process Improvement Center was created by the Southern Institute to utilize quality improvement theories and principles to assist customers in improving the efficiency, effectiveness and quality of processes within public programs that support lower-income children and families, with a focus on eligibility services. The Process Improvement Center offers consultation and training on the application of process improvement techniques to public and private entities through two major products:

  1. Process Improvement Collaboratives
    Process Improvement Collaboratives are 12-month engagements between Center staff; a collaborative faculty of experts in application simplification, literacy, policy and process improvement; and teams comprised of public program and private business representatives who share a common goal of achieving rapid improvements in public benefit programs and services. Each Collaborative includes:

    • A Pre-Work period, during which teams are asked to complete specific tasks designed to help prepare them for participation in the collaborative.
    • Three Learning Sessions, during which teams learn process improvement methodologies, practice new skills, interact with and learn from other participating teams and plan for next steps.
    • Two Action Periods, during which teams apply what they have learned by testing strategies and spreading positive results throughout an organization, county or state.

  2. Consulting and Technical Assistance
    Process Improvement Center and other Southern Institute staff are available to provide fee-based consultation and technical assistance to collaborative teams and individual organizations. Collaborative participation is not required to utilize consulting and technical assistance services, which include:

    • Technical assistance on eligibility process improvement
    • General consultation on process improvement
    • General policy consultation on Medicaid, SCHIP, the Food Stamp Program and other public benefit programs

Visit the Process Improvement Center section of our Web site to learn more about process improvement activities at the Southern Institute. We also encourage you to contact Process Improvement Center staff to discover the different ways in which we can help your organization improve the efficiency and effectiveness of processes within public benefit programs and services.



© 2005-2011 Southern Institute on Children and Families
90-F Glenda Trace, Suite 326
Newnan, GA 30265
(803) 779-2607

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