Excellence in Self-Direction Program: Chris Sell

Chris Sell implemented and manages the Wisconsin Self-Directed IT System, leading to efficiency, cost savings, and better patient outcomes for program participants. The Wisconsin Department of Health Service’s Include, Respect, I Self-Direct (IRIS) program is one of the nation’s largest Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services 1915(c) waiver programs. The over $500 million annualized program enables nearly 17,000 adults to self-direct their own long-term care services.

Chris is responsible for the web-based case management technology supporting the IRIS program, Wisconsin’s Self-Directed IT System (WISITS). Through his technological and project management expertise, Chris has brought this program to life. He created automated workflows and system validations to make it work. He used role-based permission technology to include IRIS consultant agencies and fiscal employer agents, leading to annualized state GPR savings of close to $10M. He designed, implemented, and maintains role-based permissions to align with HIPAA standards for Protected Health Information (PHI) and Personal Identifiable Information (PII), and manages the security and appropriate use of the system by 1000+ users across 14 state agencies.

In addition to his technical accomplishments, Chris managed a CMS approved Implementation Application Planning Document (IAPD), capturing funding to continue to secure and maintain 90% federal funding match for the development of the IT system by ensuring interoperability. He also acts as IRIS program lead for all analytics, using data to identify quality improvement initiatives.

Thousands of participants across Wisconsin can safely, efficiently, and cost-effectively self-direct their long-term care thanks to the leadership of Chris Sell.