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13 Illinois Agencies Sign Joint Data-Sharing Agreement

Under the terms of an enterprise memorandum of understanding, the agencies will have better delivery of customer-centric services, be better able to make strategic decisions and policies, and will improve organizational efficiencies.

Thirteen state agencies associated with the Illinois Department of Health and Human Services have signed an agreement to better position themselves to share information and improve services to their constituents.

Under the terms of an enterprise memorandum of understanding (eMOU), announced in Chicago May 26, the agencies will have better delivery to of customer-centric services, be better able to make strategic decisions and policy, and improve organizational efficiencies.

“This eMOU is a major step forward in providing better services to the taxpayers of Illinois,” said CIO Hardik Bhatt in a press release. “More than a dozen agencies agreeing to share data to improve services for taxpayers while creating a more efficient work product is historic, and to have done this in only seven months is equally significant.”

According to press release, the data sharing process has historically required state personnel to complete physical documents and travel to other agencies in search of data. Officials are hopeful the new way of disseminating information will lead to significant improvements and reduced costs for the taxpaying public.

“While many people interact with multiple health and human service agencies in Illinois, our current ‘siloed’ data structure means that each agency only sees the customers’ use of services for their particular programs,” DHS Secretary James Dimas said in the release. “Consequently, we have great difficulty assessing how the lifetime use of health and human services programs impact the total well-being of individuals and families. The eMOU provides the opportunity for Illinois’ health and human service agencies to share data with each other and thereby understand how we can optimize human potential through our collective resources.”

Participating agencies include the Departments of Aging, Children and Family Services, Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Corrections, Employment Security, Healthcare and Family Services, Human Services, Innovation and Technology, Juvenile Justice, Public Health, Veterans Affairs, Central Management Services and the Illinois State Board of Education.

Eyragon Eidam is the Web editor for Government Technology magazine, after previously serving as assistant news editor and covering such topics as legislation, social media and public safety. He can be reached at
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