Eighty years ago, Blue Cross was founded on the premise that everyone should have access to high-quality, affordable health care, and we have never wavered from that commitment. We strongly believe that one of the reasons we exist as a business is to deliver the best value in health care and support communities in ways that improve the health and well-being of everyone. One of the key ways we do that is through our broad strategy of inclusiveness. This week, our company concluded our annual month-long celebration of diversity and inclusion. During this time, employees are invited to enhance their awareness, understanding and respect for others through a number of experiences offered in addition to our regular schedule of programming throughout the year. And while this is an important time to reflect on our culture at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, inclusivity is a core belief we practice year-round to benefit our members, customers, employees and communities. We’ve always been committed to providing complete coverage for everyone -- from those with pre-existing conditions to our most vulnerable residents with Medicaid. We’re proud to offer Affordable Care Act plans in every Michigan county, even when others left the individual marketplace. We understand the importance of our similarities, differences and health disparities among our membership, and innovate with data to serve and inform our communities. We advocate for good health policy for everyone. Our efforts to be inclusive help us to better collaborate internally, and we start at the beginning with talent, recruitment and cultural competency. Our evolution to be more inclusive also recognizes different workstyles and ways of getting work done, including through our efforts to enable more flexible work opportunities. We know strategies that are built around inclusion improve our workplace environment and help attract and retain the best employees by valuing diverse thoughts and perspectives. By embracing our differences and similarities -- and increasing awareness of our many experiences -- we can create a sense of belonging for everyone in our workplace and effectively interact with people across cultures. I’m proud to lead a company that is striving to be more inclusive every day so that we can work better together to serve our members and communities here in Michigan and across the nation.
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