THOUSAND OAKS, Calif., Dec. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- As a part of its mission to improve the lives of the people it serves and the health of California's communities, Anthem Blue Cross announced today that the health plan, its corporate foundation and associates contributed nearly $3.4 million dollars and 2,300 hours to health-related causes and community events in 2011.
"Anthem Blue Cross and our associates work hard every day to help Californians get and stay healthy," said Pam Kehaly, president of Anthem Blue Cross. "I'm proud to lead a company that contributed millions of dollars and whose associates have volunteered thousands of hours to charities and community causes in 2011."
Through its State Health Index – a compilation of public health measures – and Healthy Generations program, Anthem Blue Cross and its foundation work to identify the health issues most in need of attention and then direct charitable support and volunteer efforts toward improving those areas. Major areas of focus for Anthem Blue Cross in 2011 were promoting youth health, preventing unnecessary preterm births, and providing state-mandated pertussis vaccinations to students entering the 7th through 12th grades.
Projects and organizations receiving support from Anthem Blue Cross this year included:
- Boys & Girls Clubs of America's Triple Play Program: Supports and expands the wellness program and fights childhood obesity in California.
- March of Dimes Prenatal Care Toolkit: Helps hospitals and health care providers eliminate unnecessary, early deliveries.
- OASIS Institute's CATCH Healthy Habits: Expanded a unique intergenerational wellness program to Escondido, Long Beach, Los Angeles and San Diego that teaches kids about the importance of healthy eating, active lifestyles and making good decisions.
- Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports: Increases physical activity, fitness levels and well-being of California children. The grant also funded three fitness centers in schools across the state.
- HealthCorps: Provides peer mentoring in eight California schools and administers a curriculum on nutrition, fitness and mental strength. HealthCorps was founded by TV's Dr. Mehmet Oz and his wife Lisa Oz.
In addition to grants, Anthem Blue Cross contributed more than $400,000 to local events, community organizations and nonprofits to enrich the quality of life throughout the state, including:
- Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure to work together to save lives, empower people, ensure quality care for all and energize science to find the cures for breast cancer.
- Alzheimer's Association's Walk to End Alzheimer's, the nation's largest event to raise awareness and funds to fight Alzheimer's disease.
- Best Buddies Challenge to help create opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
- AIDS Walk LA to improve the lives of people affected by HIV disease and reduce the incidence of HIV infection.
Anthem Blue Cross associates also contributed personally and financially to improving their communities in 2011.
Through the company's Associate Giving Campaign in November, Anthem Blue Cross associates pledged more than $800,000 to six beneficiaries – American Cancer Society, American Red Cross, Community Health Charities, Feeding America, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and United Way. Campaign pledges are backed by a 50 percent match from the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation, bringing the total pledged to the health organizations to more than $1.2 million.
Company associates and their families also volunteered at community organizations throughout California during the company's Community Service Day on April 30, 2011. Taking place in numerous sites throughout the state, the annual effort benefitted nonprofits dedicated to improving the quality of life in local communities.
About Anthem Blue Cross
Anthem Blue Cross is the trade name of Blue Cross of California. Anthem Blue Cross and Anthem Blue Cross Life and Health Insurance Company are independent licensees of the Blue Cross Association. ® ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross name and symbol are registered marks of the Blue Cross Association. Additional information about Anthem Blue Cross and Anthem Blue Cross Life and Health Insurance Company is available at www.anthem.com. Also, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/healthjoinin, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HealthJoinIn, or visit our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/healthjoinin.
About the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation
Through charitable grant making, the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation LLC, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Association promotes Anthem Blue Cross's inherent commitment to enhance the health and well-being of individuals and families in communities that the company serves. The Foundation focuses its funding on strategic initiatives that address and provide innovative solutions to health care challenges, as well as promoting the Healthy Generations Program, a multi-generational initiative that targets specific disease states and medical conditions. These include: prenatal care in the first trimester, low birth weight babies, cardiac morbidity rates, long term activities that decrease obesity and increase physical activity, diabetes prevalence in adult populations, adult pneumococcal and influenza vaccinations and smoking cessation. The Foundation also coordinates the company's annual associate giving campaign and its parent foundation provides a 50 percent match of associates' campaign pledges. ® ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross names and symbol are registered marks of the Blue Cross Association.
SOURCE Anthem Blue Cross