Bureau of Quality & Integration

Evaluation: Business Information Systems

The Business Information Systems unit of the BQI supports the Division through production of ad hoc and routine reports, conducting data quality reviews and taking action to increase data integrity. This is a new unit created as part of the FY 1998 and 1999 DBHS reorganization. The unit consists of a Manager and four programmers, increasing the information technology resources of the Division substantially.

In January 1999, DBHS went live with the CEDAR system, a clinical information system which augments our legacy system, the Client Information System (CIS). CEDAR was built with several goals in mind. The technology used allows the RBHAs to transmit changes and corrections to the data rather than seek permission for every change from DBHS. This results in increased data accuracy and integrity. Another goal was increased capacity to collect and use clinical outcomes data by including data elements for the Clinical Global Impression scale and the Short Form-12 health status questionnaire. DBHS' capacity to describe the population served is enhanced by the CEDAR system which allows multiple answers for the conditions which describe the client. In the past, the RBHAs had to choose whether the client fit into a funding stream of drug, alcohol, serious mental illness, children, or general mental health.

The Division has begun to use the CEDAR client, clinical, functional and demographic data to profile the people who receive behavioral health services in Arizona. It will project a need for services based on utilization trends, project costs for services, and assess the health status and functional outcome of clients. The Division began routine report production using CEDAR and CIS data in June 1999.