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Press Release

BlueCross Names Winner of Its Workplace Wellness Challenge, Donates to S.C. Special Olympics

February 7, 2014

COLUMBIA – Wrapping up a year-long workplace wellness initiative among its 12,000 employees, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina today named the winner of its building-by-building competition and presented a donation to Special Olympics of South Carolina on behalf of the winners.

“Breaking bad health habits can be a challenge, and forming new ones takes practice, patience and persistence. But developing good health habits is worth the time and effort. So BlueCross made it a corporate priority to go beyond just providing workout facilities to offer an incentive program that would challenge our work force to live a healthy lifestyle,” said BlueCross Chief Executive Officer David Pankau.

The incentive program, conducted last year and called “Get in the Habit!”, challenged employees to increase physical activity and fit healthy meals and snacks into their busy days in return for paid time off and, ideally, improved health. The program featured challenges called “Get in the Habit of Moving More,” “Get in the Habit of Eating Healthy,” and “Get in the Habit of Cooking Healthy.”

At the end of the year, the company ranked each location’s percentage of participation and rate of successful challenge completions against all other locations. With numerous buildings in Columbia and sites in Camden, Charleston, Florence, Greenville, Surfside Beach, and in other states, competition was widespread.

Today, company executives presented the “Healthy Habits Heroes” trophy to its GPC building in Columbia and presented a $5,000 check to Special Olympics of South Carolina, the nonprofit chosen by that location. Most of the employees in that building work for Palmetto GBA, a Medicare administrator, or PAI, an administrator of health plans.

Overall, more than 5,200 employees competed in at least one of the challenges and more than half of these successfully completed at least one challenge. In the “Get in the Habit of Moving More” challenge alone, participants logged more than 2.8 million minutes of exercise, which when equated to a 20-minutes-per-mile pace equals one person walking around the earth 5.6 times.

The company continues the incentive program this year and is working with large group accounts to develop similar workplace wellness programs for their work force.

About BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., and operating in South Carolina for more than 65 years, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. The only South Carolina-owned and operated health insurance carrier, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina comprises more than 40 companies involved in health insurance services, U.S. DoD health program and Medicare contracts, other insurance and employee benefits services, and a philanthropic foundation that funds programs to improve health care and access to health care for South Carolinians.

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The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 36 independent, community-based and locally-operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for more than 106 million members members – one-in-three Americans.  For more information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit We encourage you to connect with us on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube, follow us on Twitter and check out The BCBS Blog, for up-to-date information about BCBSA.