HealthLeaders-InterStudy, the leading provider of managed care market intelligence, reports that Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina has a number of innovative initiatives around obesity, pharmacy benefits and pay-for-performance plans that set it apart from other Blue Cross Blue Shield insurers. The focus is to cut costs.
"In a state with high medical costs, a high uninsured rate, and a large population of unhealthy people, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is focusing on some of these cost drivers such as pharmacy, obesity, and lack of consistent quality among providers," said Jane DuBose, director of health plan analysis at HealthLeaders-InterStudy.
According to the new Blue Profiler: North Carolina, the first in a series of reports focusing on the major nonprofit Blue Cross Blue Shield plans, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina launched bariatric surgery Centers of Excellence in 2003 with the goal of reducing complications and hospital readmission rates of patients undergoing obesity procedures. First-year results showed hospital readmission and complications rates were cut nearly in half.
The report also finds that Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina has a more aggressive strategy for pushing generics than its main competitors in the state. As the result of its "free generics" program, generic drugs went from being prescribed 37 percent of the time in 2001 to 62 percent of the time in 2007.
Blue Profiler: North Carolina is one of 15 Blue Profiler reports on the nation's largest nonprofit Blue Cross Blue Shield plans, which together insure more than 50 million people.
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