UMLs

Some of these are MindMaps and others are UMLs. I discovered Mind Maps first and then was trained at work for creating UML or Universal Modeling Language “mind maps”. I LOVE creating both and this is only a very tiny portion of the mind maps and UMLs I’ve done!

Certification Checklist

The checklist started as a reviewer’s tool to help track all the basic items needed for an application. From a general Word document to a manual show and hide system in Excel to the automated system developed in 2014 by a colleague. When he retired a year later I was tasked with the continual update of the tool. I have made multiple changes to the vb.net code behind the check boxes and also used it as inspiration for other tools. It is used on a daily basis with the 30-50 apps I process each month. 

It has a tool now for printing the worksheets by name which in addition to the checklist customized for each application includes a worksheet for the background check requirement. It is also more diligently commented in the code to allow others to know where and how to update it. During one update additional space was allowed behind the scenes for future changes. There are over 1000 lines of code and it generally takes a day or so of uninterrupted time to do a full change and edit to the system. Small changes are faster. There is a chance that another manual list will be integrated later this year as regulations change.

The Checklist went through another major change process in December 2017, just before I left. Since only I knew how to maintain the original I was asked to create a simplified variation that my remaining team mates could take care of in the future. I based my new checklist off of another project I’d done in the spring, the Compliance Checklist

M4 (Mass Mail Merge Macro)

This was an incredibly complex project I was asked to help with initially and it became my “baby” after a while.

The whole purpose of the project was to track the results of on site reviews for Medicaid compliance. The project had completed a Survey Monkey survey and was struggling to compile and output letters after additional on site reviews had been completed. I took the survey results and the additional questions that the team needed and turned it into a multi sheet Excel, one for each site (1200 or so site based providers and equal that in Spreadsheets).

The first sheet was an import of the PDF from the survey so it was clear which site was being reviewed. The second sheet contained a macro driven questionnaire for the Compliance Team to use for reviews. The third sheet compiled the data entered into the second sheet and combined it with provider name, number and address information and was used for the first round of mail outs via email as well as merging the data to a form based PDF. The last sheet compiled additional compliance data as a way to determine what additional letters were needed.

The second piece of this project was a series of 8 letters, the initial letter telling them the results of their visit and an additional 6 for various levels of compliance plus one certifying the acceptance of the changes made during the process. These were all written in Word which was then used to do mail merged letters one at a time. From there the letter was converted to PDF and fill in form fields were added.

Adobe DC and Outlook do not do mail merges well and so a secondary Excel spreadsheet system was developed to assist with creating the emails and attaching the PDFs to emails. This system used a contact name, email, file name for the PDF and a static programmed instructional message for the body of the email.

Given that I worked on the functionality of the whole system solo and had no budget, I did however have tight timelines as the site reviews were in full swing when I was asked to tackle the project. I am forever grateful to my office mate who tested several times a day for me and offered invaluable feedback on the needed functionality.

The first run of the full project was tested in house and the Provider Certification & Compliance team was gracious enough to put up with and even make up data to help test the system for me and allow me to work out bugs. The first live test was 300 merges and mailings and out of that only 8 bounced all of which were because of a provider changing their email contact and not notifying the State of the change.

This process was used to generate another 3-5 rounds of emails in order to get the 1200 or so providers all in compliance with the regulations.

In addition to designing and developing the process from end to end, I also built a procedure manual for it and provided the team with training.  A tool to track incoming responses was also built and generated reports for management.

All the macros were written in .Net. Only the actual mail merge portion is shown below. The Compliance Tool is on another page.

M4 instructions
M4 instructions
M4 instructions
M4 instructions
M4 Instructions
M4 only instructions
Settings Pie chart

Process Improvements

In 2011 my employer lost a legal case based on a simple reason: the documents were not date stamped. I remembered a couple years before dropping off paperwork and the office had a machine that my packet had gone on to, zipped through and out of curiosity I asked the clerk what the machine was. It was a date stamper, so I suggested we procure the same type of machine. Since it was my idea management agreed happily and asked me to do the research on machines, features and costs. I came back with a simple machine that would print a short line of text and the current or a programmed date. Exactly what we needed. 

A process was developed so that everyone knew how to use the machine correctly and for several years and several hundred thousand pages the machine worked perfectly. Basic maintenance kept it going until it needed a full refurbish. I again sought permission for sending the machine for repair after finding out timelines and costs. Meanwhile we had to keep up with the date stamping some other way. I tried a funky trick with Word and footers that was bad and finally settled on using Adobe Pro. I had one of the very few copies of Adobe everyone else had Adobe Reader at the time. After a few minutes of exploring the options (I’d only had the software for a few days at the time) I found a way to add footers to all the pages of a document quickly, then I found the Workflows and automated it. Finally I presented my solution to management who again enthusiastically gave the green light to use the tricks I’d learned.

It wasn’t long until everyone else received an upgrade to Adobe DC, an enterprise edition of Adobe that has all the bells and whistles. I exported my workflow, sent it around to the team and now everyone can use either the machine which is up and running smoothly or they can use the Adobe Workflow.

The next major process improvement was for only part of the team and a specific project but it saves a lot of time. The basics of the process is to compare 2 or sometimes more documents for differences. This was being done manually, on paper and was taking a very long time when the project was on a very tight deadline.

Not long after this portion of the project was getting underway Adobe DC received an update with some new features. Being the sort who likes to know what software does I’d played with the feature of comparing documents, thought it was cool and filed the idea away in memory.

While chatting with my new office mate I found out what exactly she was doing, manually comparing documents so I described the new tool, showed it off briefly as it was late on a Friday, and left for home. Much to everyone’s delight the new tool was adopted Monday morning and has saved the team roughly 88% of their time on that not so small portion of the project.

Archive Status Category Guide

An Archive Guide I had to craft and is used all the time for the Certification files.

 

Archive Status Category Guide

DS3 vs Record Retention Schedule

DS3 Status

Type of Archive status

Retention Schedule

Notes

Active

Off site

 1.1

Offsite storage may include site reviews

Inactive – Application Withdrawn

Not archived

N/A

Sent back to provider

Inactive – Certified but Enrollment Pending

Not archived

NA/

Can convert to an NE

Inactive – Decertified/Disenrolled/Terminated

Involuntary

1.4

Major Department Action may include site reviews

Inactive –Denied Initial Application

Not archived

N/A

Sent back to provider

Inactive –Denied Renewal Application

Involuntary

1.4

Sent back to provider

Inactive –Did Not Reapply, Cert. Expired

Voluntary

1.2

Voluntary closure

Inactive – Initial Application Pending

Not archived

N/A

Just received may convert to a denial, withdrawn, enrollment pending or active

Inactive –Returned Incomplete Application

Not archived

NA/

Sent back to provider

Inactive –Voluntary Closure

Voluntary includes -NE

1.2

Provider requests to close may include site reviews

Voluntary Closed – Auxiliary

Not a DS3 Status

1.3

Includes forgotten items found after main file has been archived

Involuntary Closed – Auxillary

Not a DS3 Status

1.5

Includes forgotten items found after main file has been archived

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