Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas broke ground Thursday on its C1 Innovation Lab, with BCBS executives and partners signing a steel beam that will be embedded in the lab’s structure to signify its progress on innovation development.
BCBS is the first tenant in the Factory Six03 building in Dallas’ West End. Granite Properties is currently turning 31,000 square feet there into high-tech office space for BCBS.
Kevin Cassidy, BCBS president of enterprise national accounts, Dan McCoy, BCBS Texas president, and Lt. Governor Dan Patrick spoke at the ceremony, providing updates and insight on the lab.
The C1 innovation lab—the name stands for “customers first,” according to Cassidy—aims to “improve healthcare quality while lowering the cost.”
“While we focus on a customer-first approach … we will use the space to collaborate and work with our national and local customers to create healthcare solutions,” Cassidy said.
The lab, Cassidy says, will include three types of space: collaboration space, co-located business operations space, and space for a design team.
The collaboration space is available for all teams to work, including the design team, the co-located workforce, internal stakeholders, clients, vendors, and academic representatives. The co-located business operations will include customer service and care management teams and enterprise health care management teams forming strategic partnerships to improve care coordination, health outcomes, and member experience for select accounts. And the design team—comprised of strategists, design thinkers, and creators—will review concepts, pilot products, and processes in order to bring healthcare solutions to the market.
In regard to the lab’s location, McCoy says BCBS chose the West End because it wanted to be in a “new innovation district” that fit the organization’s “customer-first initiative for innovation.”
“We found that bringing our customers into the experience of design thinking helps us to develop better products,” McCoy said. “We’re excited because we think its the first time in the country where a true ‘maker space’ has been created. We’ll have customers here along with people doing real work: healthcare management, claims management, customer service … all of which are participating in the innovation process.”
According to Patrick, BCBS’ innovation lab opening shows it is on the forefront of healthcare development.
“Quoting Steve Jobs of Apple,” Patrick said during the ceremony, “‘Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower’ … which is what we demonstrate here.”
The C1 Innovation Lab is expect to open in June.