The US Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services has selected IBM, EDS, and a state BlueCross BlueShield subsidiary to consolidate the agency’s 22 data centers into four centers under a 10-year contract worth as much as $1.9bn. The three companies will compete for future work under the program; for example, IBM on Monday announced it has received a five-year award worth approximately $200m.
The subsidiary, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina’s Companion Data Services LLC, already provides Medicare processing for CMS. EDS currently offers a range of data center and claims services to the government, and IBM works on claims, data, and other systems for CMS.
As part of the program, dubbed the CMS IT Modernization Initiative, the agency will transfer all software and hosting services for Medicare, Medicaid, and its children’s health insurance program to the new data centers over the next five years. CMS hopes the new centers improve processing, standardize policy, and boost data control and security. It puts the annual cost savings at $45m.