Library Index » Popular Articles

Blue Cross Blue Shield Ma - The History and Present of Blue Cross Blue Shield

health insurance association coverage

When many people think of healthcare insurance providers, one of the first companies they think of is Blue Cross Blue Shield. Blue Cross Blue Shield today refers to an association composed of 39 different member organizations that offer healthcare insurance in the United States. This association of different organizations has expanded over the years to provide healthcare coverage for more than 100 million people. Today, the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois at the Michigan Plaza.

Originally, however, Blue Cross and Blue Shield were completely different organizations. What became to be known as Blue Cross began in 1929. This insurance program began at Baylor University located in Dallas, Texas and was founded by Justin Kimball. First, the only plan offered was one marketed to teachers working at the school. The plan only cost six dollars a year and could provide for a hospital stay of up to 21 days. This plan proved to be very successful, and soon the insurance company expanded to include other groups of employees in Dallas. The company then expanded nationally as part of the American Hospital Association. In 1939, the American Hospital Association adopted a blue cross as its logo. The American Hospital Association Commission was replaced by the Blue Cross Association in 1960.

Like wise, Blue Shield began its existence as a health insurance company providing coverage to a small, specific group of clientele. Originally, Blue Shield was used to refer to health coverage that mine workers and lumber jacks living in the Pacific Northwest paid for in monthly fees to bureaus composed of physicians working in the area. The first official Blue Shield health insurance plan was offered in 1939 to customers living in California. The Blue Shield would later be adopted as a symbol to represent nine different health insurance plans known as the Associated Medical Care Plan. This association would later be known as the National Association of Blue Shield Plans.

These two separate organizations would finally merge in 1982 to produce the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association we know today. Since the completion of this merger, Blue Cross Blue Shield has become one of the largest healthcare insurance associations in the United States.

The company acts much like a franchise. Insurance companies that use the Blue Cross Blue Shield banner are franchisees that pay for the right to associate their companies with the brand. Each franchisee is actually completely independent of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Traditionally, these franchisees would be completely independent of each other as well. For example, there are Blue Cross Blue Shield franchisees in Massachusetts and in Illinois. However, Blue Cross Blue Shield MA and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois are completely independent of each other as business organizations.

Each franchisee has the option of using the brand of the Blue Cross, Blue Shield, or a combination of both. Health insurance franchisees that do use the brand will offer health insurance in specific regions. Today, insurance companies that use the Blue Cross Blue Shield brand offer health insurance plans in every state in the US.

Not only do Blue Cross Blue Shield franchisees offer health coverage all across the United States, but companies that use the brand also often provide health coverage for the federal government as well as state governments. For one, Blue Cross Blue Shield is the choice used by many states to implement Medicare health coverage programs. Blue Cross Blue Shield plans are also used as health coverage for thousands of employees of the federal government. Like wise, similar health plans are offered to employees of many state governments. Blue Cross Blue Shield is often the choice used to implement state based health insurance plans as well. One example of a state based plan that offers coverage under a Blue Cross Blue Shield franchisee is the Healthy Indiana Plan.

The largest of these franchisees is WellPoint. WellPoint is public corporation that offers health coverage under the Blue Cross Blue Shield banner in fourteen different states. The largest private company to carry the Blue Cross Blue Shield banner is the Health Care Service Corporation. This company offers health coverage in a number of different states located in the Midwest and in the South.

Blue Man Group Chicago - Blue Man Group: Chicago Excitement Awaits You! [next] [back] Black Dining Chairs - How to Accentuate your Table With Black Dining Chairs

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or