For more than 90 years, Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) companies have provided secure and stable health care coverage to people in communities across the country. BCBS grew out of a grassroots approach to a prepaid hospital plan in 1929.
The 34 independent and locally operated BCBS companies take what we learn from covering 1 in 3 Americans to make health care work better for everyone.
79 of America's Fortune
Nearly 6.9 million people who work for small employers
18 million unionized workers, retirees and their families—the #1 choice for organized labor
Millions of Americans through government-supported health care programs, including:
5.8 million federal workers, retirees and their families through the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program — the top choice for federal workers
through Medicaid programs
through Medicare Advantage
through Medigap supplemental insurance
through Medicare Part D Rx drug plans
Blue Cross established at Baylor University for Dallas public school teachers.
A Minnesota plan first to adopt blue Greek cross logo; others follow suit.
Blue Shield companies launch, covering the cost of physician care.
Blue Shield symbol, devised in Buffalo, N.Y., is adopted by growing number of Blue Shield companies.
America's first "Blue Cross Baby" is born in Durham, N.C.
National Labor Relations Act passes, prompting employers to offer health insurance.
More Americans seek care, some see doctor for the first time.
More than 3 million people have health coverage through BCBS companies. Still, fewer than 10 percent of Americans are insured.
BCBS logo becomes a trusted symbol as nearly seven out of 10 Americans have health coverage.
Federal Employees Health Benefit Program (FEHBP) is established.
BCBS creates its first Federal Employees Program® (FEP®), initially enrolling 33 percent of federal employees. Now, FEP is the top choice for federal workers, with 5.6 million enrolled.
Medicare enacted; government turns to BCBS to help establish systems serving more than 19 million in first year.
BCBS companies establish National Labor Office (NLO), becoming first to devote an office solely to organized labor's needs.