; Blue Cross And Blue Shield Of Alabama Partners With New Directions Behavioral Health
Skip to content

Press Release

Blue Cross And Blue Shield Of Alabama Partners With New Directions Behavioral Health

December 20, 2013

BIRMINGHAM – New Directions Behavioral Health, which provides managed behavioral health to 7.5 million lives across the nation, has been selected to provide managed behavioral health services for members enrolled in health plans offered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama.

Recognized as a leader in the behavioral health field, New Directions offers comprehensive managed behavioral healthcare, employee assistance programs, health coaching and organizational consulting to health plans and employers. New Directions’ approach to care combines a members-first philosophy with the innovative programs needed in the changing healthcare landscape due to healthcare reform and Mental Health Parity.

This partnership enables access for the members of the Alabama Plan to one of the most progressive behavioral health companies in the country. Focused on providing seamless transition, members will find that they can continue with their current provider while gaining a number of new services, including:  

  • 24/7 telephone access to licensed clinicians 
  • Referrals to providers that best fit member needs in Alabama and nationally
  • Rapid response and resolution to member and provider questions
  • Intensive care management services for members with the highest behavioral health needs
  • Expanded capacity to provide care coordination and integration with medical care
  • Special education and coaching programs for members with Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder, and Substance Use Disorder 
  • Outreach services to support improved health outcomes, including e-health options

“Our partnership with New Directions will significantly expand the scope of the behavioral health services we currently offer customers,” says Jeff Ingrum, Senior Vice President of Health Care Networks at
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama. “By integrating behavioral health with physician, hospital and pharmacy services, we will further meet our customers’ total healthcare needs.”

“We’re excited to work together with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama and to align our behavioral health program with upcoming changes related to healthcare reform. This partnership opens up new opportunities to enhance service offerings to members,” said John Quick, President and CEO of New Directions. “By integrating behavioral health and medical care, members will ultimately experience lower costs. “

With the addition of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama, New Directions will open a new office in the Birmingham area.  

The partnership between News Directions and the Alabama Plan becomes effective on January 1, 2014.

About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama has insured Alabamians for more than 77 years. Blue Cross offers coverage plans to corporations, individuals and the senior market. For more information about Blue Cross, visit AlabamaBlue.com. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

About New Directions
With employee assistance program roots beginning in 1978, New Directions began providing managed behavioral healthcare in 1995, organizational consultation in 2000, and health coaching services in 2005. New Directions is jointly owned by five Blue Plans: Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City; Florida Blue; Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield; Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama; and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas. The company is accredited by NCQA as a managed behavioral healthcare organization and by URAC for health utilization management and case management. New Directions offers services that combine innovation with evidence-based practices and a commitment to meet the unique behavioral health, work/life, and wellness needs of its members. For additional information, visit www.ndbh.com.


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 105 million members – one-in-three Americans.  For more information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit bcbs.com. 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.