Achievement In Outreach: Inside BCBSTX’s Push To Educate The Public

Few industries are as critical to the vibrancy of North Texas as healthcare. The sector adds more than $52 billion to the local economy each year and supports at least 600,000 regional jobs.

It’s also tough to find a field with a more virtuous mission; after all, healthcare companies and workers are in the business of improving and saving lives.

We think that’s worth a little recognition. Our new Excellence in Healthcare Awards—produced in partnership with our online news site, D Healthcare Daily—honor industry executives, practitioners, innovators, researchers, and others who stand out in their fields. The inaugural program attracted more than 180 nominations.

From that group, D CEO editors selected 30 finalists and winners in 11 categories. We’re pleased to tell you more about them.

Achievement in Community Outreach: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas

Sweeping changes brought about by the Affordable Care Act called for an unprecedented effort by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas to educate consumers about the law and how it could work for them.

BCBSTX launched its Be Covered Texas campaign in the spring of 2013—ahead of the initial Health Insurance Marketplace enrollment period in October—after research revealed that consumers were wary, confused, and uninformed about the law.

The campaign partnered with community organizations to distribute information about healthcare reform in all 254 Texas counties, including bilingual materials for the Hispanic population.

“There is a transformation occurring in America’s healthcare system, and we knew educating consumers about that was going to be a big job,” says BCBSTX Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Dan McCoy. “Working with our community partners was an incredible experience and it helped us to identify the unique needs of [consumers].”

By April 2014, BCBSTX and its partners had participated in 349 events attended by more than 1.3 million people, including two “Care Fair” health and wellness events in Houston and Dallas. The campaign didn’t stop there.

“As part of ongoing efforts to help engage and educate the more than 700,000 newly insured Texans, Be Covered Texas has expanded its programs,” says BCT chair Michelle Riddell, vice president of strategic communications and community investment. BCT now “is working with nearly 170 community partners statewide and more than 65 in Dallas to help consumers understand how to get the most value from their healthcare coverage.”

—Glenda Vosburgh


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