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At Blue Cross, Our Mission is to Improve Health for All

At Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, we come to work every day passionate about improving our members’ health in Michigan and across the nation.  The people who carry Blue Cross insurance are our driving force and we are proud that 4.7 million individuals in Michigan do so. We also have a substantial membership outside of our state – individuals who are part of companies or organizations based here but with offices in other states – and they too have the security that comes with our insurance.

Beyond that, we also look to help Michigan communities and have a mission to help all residents in our state be as healthy as possible. We strive to help everyone in our communities live their healthiest lives. We do this by improving access to care by funding 45 safety net clinics across the state, which helps those who are uninsured get basic health care. We also support organizations and schools working to improve health and we diligently work to lower costs and improve health care quality through a number of groundbreaking initiatives with doctors and hospitals.

In fact, we invested nearly $67 million back to the communities we serve in 2017 – more than $6 per Michigan resident – to support community-based, health-related programs and services.

Here are just some of the ways we do it:

  • We improve health care access. We believe everyone deserves high-quality care. In 2018, we provided $827,122 in grants to safety net clinics, making us Michigan’s largest private donor to clinics that provide free or low-cost medical and dental treatment for uninsured and vulnerable Michigan residents. We’ve awarded more than $13 million in grants since 2005, which have enabled volunteer doctors and nurses at these clinics to care for more than 74,000 people every year. Take a look inside one of the clinics we’ve supported.
  • We’re creating a healthier future for our communities. We support organizations and schools working to improve health in every corner of Michigan.
  • We’ve contributed $7.3 million to statewide community initiatives. Because our employees live everywhere in Michigan, we also show up in communities across the state. Look for us at events that promote healthy places and people, such as races, health fairs and community happenings.
  • We’ve helped 270,000 children through our Building Healthy Communities program since its inception in 2009 as a way to contain rising childhood obesity rates. Research shows kids who take part eat more fruits and vegetables and get more exercise. Take a look at the healthy changes kids have made at Kennedy Elementary School in Livonia.
  • We improve health care quality and lower costs. When it comes to making health care more effective and affordable, we’re leaders in looking for innovative practices and implementing them with partner organizations and providers.
  • Our patient-centered medical home (PCMH) designation has been earned by 4,692 primary care physicians in 1,709 practices across the state. By encouraging doctor’s offices to put patients first, care is coordinated, and patients receive the right care in the right setting, avoiding unnecessary trips to higher-cost care locations, such as the ER. In the program’s first nine years, we helped prevent $626 million in health care costs. PCMH practices (which often accept Blue Cross and competitors’ insurance) boast impressive results for patients:
  • 1 percent higher rates of well-child visits at the appropriate age marks
  • 8 percent higher rates of weight assessment counseling with BMI
  • 6 percent higher rates of colorectal cancer screening
  • 24 percent higher rates of breast cancer screening
  • 19 percent lower rate of emergency department visits
  • Blue Cross-sponsored Value Partnerships initiatives have saved $2.2 billion in health care expenses. These innovative partnerships pull together hospitals and physician groups throughout the state to transform Michigan’s health care system, leading to breakthroughs that have improved patient outcomes in specialty areas such as cardiology, cancer, bariatric surgery, blood clot prevention and general surgery. Learn more at ValuePartnerships.com

Additionally, part of our approach to make Michigan healthier is to work with partner organizations that are already heavily invested in this work. Relationships with organizations such as Special Olympics and the American Heart Association allow us to spread the message of good health far and wide across the state through innovative programs and outreach. And to help encourage our kids to be active, we partner with the Detroit Lions and other professional sports teams to promote exercise and healthy habits.

If you are a member or customer employer, you know that the experience and quality Blue Cross provides is unparalleled in the market. From our recent J.D. Power award for “Highest Member Satisfaction among Commercial Health Plans in Michigan” in 2018, to our continued commitment to keep rate increases low, there’s a reason we continue to be the leading choice for health insurance for Michiganders.

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Photo credit: oscarhdez

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