Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Working to Improve Health throughout Missouri

With roots dating back to 1936, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Missouri (Anthem) has a proud tradition of serving not only its members, but also the broader community. In 2012, this legacy continued as the health insurer, its charitable foundation and local associates contributed more than $2.1 million and hundreds of volunteer hours to vital organizations and causes across the state.

“More than one million Missouri residents – and about 1-in-3 Americans – carry a Blue Cross and Blue Shield card,” said Steve Martenet, president of Anthem. “We understand how health causes impact people at a very personal level, and that’s why we’re working hard to ensure quality, affordable health care solutions remain within reach for businesses, families, individuals and seniors. As an important part of our daily mission, we’re also honored to be able to support local and national organizations that are making a difference and improving the quality of life in our state.”

Through its State Health Index – a compilation of public health measures – and Healthy Generations grant program, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and its foundation work to identify the health issues most in need of attention and then direct charitable support and volunteer efforts toward improving those areas. Major areas of focus for Anthem in 2012 included promoting active lifestyles and working to reduce the devastating impact of chronic illnesses, such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer on Missouri children, adults and seniors.

Key areas of support included:

  • Smoking Cessation – American Lung Association;
  • Childhood Obesity – GO! St. Louis, Girls on the Run;
  • Cancer – Komen Race for the Cure, St. Louis;
  • Physical Activity – Paralyzed Veterans Association;
  • Flu immunizations – Missouri Botanical Gardens;
  • Cystic Fibrosis - Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
  • Premature births – March of Dimes

Grants provided by the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation in 2012 included:

  • $30,000 to Food Outreach for cancer patients.
  • $20,000 to Eye Care Charity of Mid-America for vision screening.
  • $50,000 to City of St. Louis Department of Health for Small Changes program on physical activity and nutrition.

Missouri communities also benefit from grants made by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s parent company to national and regional organizations, such as Boys & Girls Clubs of America, American Cancer Society and OASIS Institute.

Formal grants and sponsorships are supplemented by informal charitable activities and donation drives organized by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s offices and business units over the course of the year. Beneficiaries of these efforts include: American Heart Association’s Wear Red Day, St. Louis Area Foodbank volunteer days, and KidSmart school supply drive. Missouri associates also proudly serve as community volunteers and board members for a broad range of non-profits.

On an annual basis, Anthem’s local associates enthusiastically support two of the parent company’s signature social responsibility programs: Community Service Day and Associate Giving Campaign.

Community Service Day – On April 28, 2012, company associates and their families also volunteered at community organizations throughout Missouri during the company’s Community Service Day. Taking place at eight sites throughout the state, the annual effort benefitted nonprofits dedicated to improving the quality of life in local communities, including Edgewood Children’s Center, Mary Ryder Home, Southeast MO Food Bank and Ozarks Food Harvest.

Associate Giving Campaign – Each November, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield associates make one time contributions and ongoing pledges to health-focused charities through the company’s Associate Giving Campaign. The six charities in the 2011-2012 campaign were: American Cancer Society, American Red Cross, Community Health Charities, Feeding America, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and United Way. Contributions made through the campaign are backed by a 50 percent match from the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation, bringing the total paid out to Missouri charities in 2012 to more than $289,000.

“The health causes we are supporting are not quick-fix issues,” said Martenet. “However, our hope is that by improving the lives of individuals we can make inroads on the major health challenges of our time and create brighter futures for families across the state.”

About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Missouri

In Missouri (excluding 30 counties in the Kansas City area) Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is the trade name for RightCHOICE® Managed Care, Inc. (RIT), Healthy Alliance® Life Insurance Company (HALIC), and HMO Missouri, Inc. RIT and certain affiliates administer non-HMO benefits underwritten by HALIC and HMO benefits underwritten by HMO Missouri, Inc. RIT and certain affiliates only provide administrative services for self-funded plans and do not underwrite benefits. Independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Additional information about Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Missouri is available at www.anthem.com. Also, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/healthjoinin, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HealthJoinIn, or visit our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/healthjoinin.

About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation

Through charitable grant making, the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation LLC, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, promotes Anthem’s inherent commitment to enhance the health and well-being of individuals and families in communities that Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield serves. The Foundation focuses its funding on strategic initiatives that address and provide innovative solutions to health care challenges, as well as promoting the Healthy Generations Program, a multi-generational initiative that targets specific disease states and medical conditions. These include: prenatal care in the first trimester, low birth weight babies, cardiac morbidity rates, long term activities that decrease obesity and increase physical activity, diabetes prevalence in adult populations, adult pneumococcal and influenza vaccinations and smoking cessation. The Foundation also coordinates the company’s annual associate giving campaign and its parent foundation provides a 50 percent match of associates’ campaign pledges. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

Contacts:

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield
Deborah Wiethop, 314-923-4767
deborah.wiethop@bcbsmo.com
Twitter: @AnthemPR_MO
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