About Blue Cross
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, chartered in 1933, was one of the state’s first health plans. Its founding mission was to promote a wider, more economical and timely availability of health services for the people of Minnesota. We’ve remained true to that mission for more than 70 years.
Blue Cross is the largest health plan in Minnesota, providing health coverage to more than 2.7 million members. Blue Cross offers coverage for individuals and groups of all sizes, as well as for state and federal employees in every county throughout the state. Blue Cross also serves more than 125,000 members enrolled in government-sponsored programs and 184,000 members enrolled in Medicare programs.
In 2003 Blue Cross was one of the first in the country to offer consumer-directed health plans. Blue Cross currently serves 155,000 members in its Options Blue plans, which combine a high-deductible health plan with a financial account and support from health management services and an online member service center.
Blue Cross, a not-for-profit, taxable organization, and its affiliates — under the parent corporation Aware Integrated Inc. — had total premium and premium equivalents in 2004 of more than $6 billion. More than 90 percent of health care premiums it received were paid back out for health care claims. Blue Cross realized a 0.2 percent net income and paid more than $106 million in 2004 in taxes and assessments.
Network strength and service
Blue Cross offers its customers access to 100 percent of nonfederal hospitals and more than 93 percent of professional providers statewide. Its plans offer true statewide coverage and access to providers in all areas of the state. The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) has awarded its highest accreditation status, for service and clinical quality, to the three main components of Blue Cross’ managed care business.
Blue Cross strives to empower people to improve their health through its contracting and credentialing requirements, benefit designs that cover preventive services and programs that help people with chronic diseases and illnesses live healthier lives. Blue Cross focuses extensive efforts on three areas: tobacco reduction, influenza, and chronic disease management. We also provide programs for healthy pregnancies and births, hypertension management, ensuring follow-up care after hospitalization, nurse advice lines, and a variety of health education/consumer information services.