Blue Cross and Blue Shield of South Carolina is a mutual insurance firm that offers health and other insurance services, Medicare contracts, and employee benefits services. Through more than 40 companies, it serves about a million members in the Palmetto State. Its BlueChoice HealthPlan is an HMO that offers managed care plans to more than 205,000 members. Other group offerings include PPO plans (Preferred Blue) and a consumer-driven plan (Business Blue). For individuals, the firm provides Personal Blue plans, Medicare supplemental coverage, and Medicare Advantage PPO and private-fee-for-service plans.
The company has offices that serve multiple lines of business in Camden, Charleston, Columbia, Florence, Greenville, and Surfside Beach, South Carolina, and in Augusta, Georgia; Dallas; Columbus, Ohio; and Nashville, Tennessee.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of South Carolina also has life and property/casualty insurance subsidiaries, as well as a government health programs division that offers a health program for the US Department of Defense. The company's government programs unit administers managed care contracts for Medicare, Medicaid, and TRICARE (for military families). Its operating companies include Palmetto GBA, which specializes in managing Medicare benefit plans, and PGBA, which handles TRICARE contracts.
In 2013 it processed almost 1.1 billion claims and 19 billion transactions.
Sales and Marketing
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of South Carolina offers health insurance to individuals and small groups in South Carolina and provides administrative services for larger, self-funded group health plans in the state such as HealthNow of New York, Inc.
The company markets its products through TV advertising and social media.
To grow its business, Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina provides an ever-widening array of health care plans, as it seeks to please individual and group members with a diverse range of needs. Like many insurers, the company is increasing its promotion of health education and disease management programs, in an industry-wide effort to increase preventative care and thus lower the cost of reactive medical care costs. It also regularly invests in its technology infrastructure to provide prompt data services to its providers and members alike. In fact, IBM has ranked its data center in the top 2.5% worldwide.
In 2013 BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina began working with 11 medical practices in Charleston and Berkeley counties that recently launched patient-centered medical homes. These homes focus on patients with diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease who are BlueCross members, or members of BlueChoice® HealthPlan of South Carolina or the State Health Plan. (In 2012 the company teamed up with Bon Secours Medical Group to launched a new health care model -- patient-centered medical homes -- in upstate South Carolina).
In 2013 BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and BlueChoice® HealthPlan of South Carolina launched a telemedicine consultation program to increase access to specialty care for members in underserved areas.
That year BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina opened its first retail store in Columbia to meet consumers’ need for information regarding the Affordable Care Act and to serve as a long-term community-based resource center.
The company traces its roots back to the 1946 formation of the not-for-profit South Carolina Hospital Service Plan, which later became Blue Cross of South Carolina. The Blue Shield organization entered South Carolina in 1949, and the two entities merged to form Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina in 1971.