Highmark Helps Those in Need During 'Cover the Uninsured Week'

Resource guide gives people a hand in identifying their health insurance


Apr 25, 2008, 01:00 ET from Highmark Inc.

    PITTSBURGH, April 25 /PRNewswire/ -- As one of Pennsylvania's leading
 health insurers, Highmark Inc.'s mission is to provide access to
 affordable, quality health care enabling individuals to live longer,
 healthier lives. Since navigating the insurance maze can be burdensome or
 confusing to many people, Highmark has released a new simple and
 easy-to-read self-help guide to give people a hand in identifying their
 health insurance options.
     "Because it is impossible to predict illness or injury, people need to
 have the right health insurance coverage to protect themselves and their
 families against extreme financial burden or hardship that accompanies
 unexpected medical bills," said Highmark's Director of Individuals Markets,
 Ken Cikovic. "National 'Cover the Uninsured Week' is providing an
 opportunity to continue the conversation in communities across our service
 area about the importance of having health insurance regardless of one's
 age or health status. And, we have a new resource available to help."
     A recent Highmark market study indicates that approximately 20 percent
 of Pennsylvanians under age 65 are uninsured. Of those uninsured, 38
 percent are considered "chronically uninsured." This means they have not
 had insurance coverage for more than five years or are age 30 and above and
 never had insurance. Increased visibility during national "Cover the
 Uninsured Week" is giving Highmark an opportunity to focus on the needs of
 the uninsured and under-insured in order to change that statistic, lower
 the percentage and help people identify and secure the insurance coverage
 that's best for themselves and their families.
     Today, being uninsured is no longer a result of "being poor." While
 residents of both Western and Central Pennsylvania and in the Lehigh Valley
 cite employment issues and cost as primary reasons for going without
 insurance coverage, many people are simply unaware of what is available to
 them. Others believe that because they are young or healthy, they don't
 want or need health insurance coverage.
     Highmark's new "Self-Help Guide for the Uninsured" is now available to
 assist people in identifying the right health insurance coverage options
 for themselves and their families. Anyone can request a copy of the Guide
 by calling 1-866-488-7481 in Western Pennsylvania, or 1-866-697-4077 in
 Central Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley. This publication describes the
 kinds of individual medically underwritten and guaranteed issue health
 insurance plans available through Highmark, low- and no-cost options for
 children's health insurance, and resources available through the
 Commonwealth and federal government.
     In addition, more information is also available by visiting Highmark
 online at http://www.highmark.com, (Select Find Insurance - Individuals &
     About Highmark
     As one of the leading health insurers in Pennsylvania, Highmark Inc.'s
 mission is to provide access to affordable, quality health care enabling
 individuals to live longer, healthier lives. Based in Pittsburgh, Highmark
 serves 4.6 million people through the company's health care benefits
 business. Highmark contributes millions of dollars to help keep quality
 health care programs affordable and to support community-based programs
 that work to improve people's health. Highmark exerts an enormous economic
 impact throughout Pennsylvania. A recent study states that Highmark's
 positive impact exceeded $2.5 billion. The company provides the resources
 to give its members a greater hand in their health. Highmark Inc. is an
 independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an
 association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans. For more
 information, visit http://www.highmark.com.

SOURCE Highmark Inc.