Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Employees Honored at Health Care Value Awards

Kathleen Gardner

| 3 min read

The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Health Care Value team celebrated its best and brightest Monday with the first annual HCV Awards. “I was, quite frankly, astonished at the participation we had in this process – both in terms of nominations received and votes cast,” said Joe Hohner, executive vice president, Health Care Value, who hosted the program at Detroit’s Rattlesnake Club. Three individuals and four teams were selected for top honors from 293 nominations. More than 2,100 votes were received across the seven awards. “I am beyond pleased at the response – and we will definitely be doing this again next year,” Hohner said.
Joe Hohner and the Victor Award winner, Laurie Wesolowicz
Laurie Wesolowicz, director Pharmacy Services clinical, was honored with the top honor, the Victor Award, presented by Hohner. “The Victor exemplifies leadership, builds trust, and selflessly mentors and encourages others to achieve great things,” Hohner said. “Our Victor is an effective communicator, well aligned with corporate and divisional goals, who goes above and beyond the normal scope of responsibility.” An overview of other winning teams and individuals follows.

Valor Award

The only award for which employees across the company were invited to vote, the Valor Award, went to the Pharmacy Services Operations team. “Over the years, there have been numerous issues with coverage for our customers,” said Steve Anderson, vice president, Provider Contracting and Network Administration, who presented the award. “Through the collaboration of these leaders and their teams, we have worked collaboratively to understand and resolve issues, and work to get to the root causes to permanently address them.”

Verve Award

The Pharmacy Services Fraud Waste and Abuse team captured the Verve Award. “This team somehow not only keeps identifying potential opportunities in their field of study, they continue to work across the organization to put in prevention mechanisms as well,” said Mark Johnson, vice president, Network Management and Business Segment Alignment, who presented the award. “Despite facing drug cartels, drug rings, addicts, prolific prescribers and dishonest fillers, this small team enthusiastically works to stop the fraud, decrease the abuse, decrease costs, and improve safety.”

Vanguard Award

The Wellness and Care Management Training, Quality and Accreditation team earned the Vanguard Award for training hundreds of employees on a new system. “They got everyone on the same page,” said presenter Mary Smith, vice president, Health Care Value Center of Excellence. “Each trainer on the team took on a larger role in developing strategies to overcome barriers and handle increasing class sizes. They were constantly asked to do more with less, and still provide amazing outcomes.”

Value Award

The Collaborative Quality Initiatives (CQI) team won the Value Award, presented by Ann Baker, vice president, Wellness and Care Management. The six-person team has had a major impact on BCBSM provider relations, enhanced the company’s brand, and saved thousands of lives and hundreds of millions of dollars, she noted. “Behind all of these outcomes stands a highly collaborative team responsible for the development and administration of over 20 quality programs and for the continued growth and smooth administration of all aspects of the program,” Baker said.

Virtuoso Award

Dr. David Share, senior vice president, Value Partnerships, presented the Virtuoso Award to Tracy Welch, a senior health care analyst. “This person always gives 100 percent toward everything they touch. This ‘virtuoso’ consistently goes above and beyond to help us achieve our goals and engage our members. This individual does not limit themselves to a 9 to 5 day; they deliver no matter what it takes,” Share said.

Valiant Award

Pharmacy Services business consultant Allison Combs was honored with the Valiant Award. Sue Barkell, senior vice president, Health Care Value, said Combs’ “energy and excitement to drive us toward a better, more empowered and customer-focused workforce is outstanding. She also does a great job of involving others and connecting the dots.”
MI Blues Perspectives is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association