In North Carolina, the dramatic increase in need for social services has been met with quick action.
In North Carolina, the dramatic increase in need for social services has been met with quick action. The faltering economy has created more demand for Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) and expanded eligibility guidelines have made more families potentially eligible for assistance — so the state knew it had to do something to help caseworkers keep up with individual and family needs.
For the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Electronic Pre-Assessment Screening Service (ePASS) was the answer. ePASS allows citizens to do online selfscreening for potential eligibility for FNS and Emergency Assistance Program. Over the coming year additional programs such as Work First, Medicaid, Crisis Intervention Program (CIP) and Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) will be added.
Currently ePASS is available for citizens to get vital information about benefits and services they may be eligible for and allows citizens to fill out electronic applications for the programs. The applications can then be printed and mailed in, faxed or delivered in person.