CMS works with MarkLogic to expand cloud platforms

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are expanding a collaboration with data platform vendor MarkLogic that dates back to 2011.

The early work focused on MarkLogic helping CMS launch the Healthcare.gov web site that supported the Affordable Care Act and enabled individuals to purchase health insurance. The vendor helped with the coordination of hundreds of thousands of data points from both the public and private sectors while facing a mandatory government completion deadline to launch the ACA.

Now, MarkLogic and CMS have a new three-year agreement to develop a second-generation cloud-based platform to bring in expanded data sets, says Julie Furt, senior vice president of global consulting and training services at MarkLogic.

The expanded data includes older data that legacy systems previously could not accommodate but now can via the platform, as well as CMS being able to more easily get data from Medicaid, states and insurers, along with indictment lists to track individuals previously convicted of fraud who now are registering as providers.

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Under what CMS calls its Cloud First Strategy, the organization also expects to move apps to commercial hosting providers, with CMS only paying for computing resources.

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MarkLogic will work with the agency to develop next-generation database technologies and platforms, ingesting data as-is to the platform, and adapting to new regulations and modifications with the goal to reduce overall project costs and increase data security.

For example, should an application need more capacity, a cloud vendor can enable CMS to have more resources at its disposal such as servers, disks, storage and applications. “Now, CMS won’t have to build its own resources, but just use what it needs,” says Furt.

CMS also can take advantage of using the platform to analyze life sciences data to better understand tools that could aid researchers and make the tools available on the platform.

The platform further will be used by the Affordable Care Act program and more broadly in applications throughout CMS to rapidly build and deploy applications in the cloud.

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