; Highmark Blue Shield Partners With Schuylkill Alliance For Health Care Access To Expand Availability Of Health Care For The Uninsured And Unemployed
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Press Release

Highmark Blue Shield Partners With Schuylkill Alliance For Health Care Access To Expand Availability Of Health Care For The Uninsured And Unemployed

March 13, 2013

CAMP HILL – Hundreds of uninsured individuals are referred each year to the Schuylkill Alliance for Health Care Access, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing the availability of and access to primary and preventive medical, dental and behavioral services for the residents of Schuylkill County. An increasing number of those individuals are also unemployed and have chronic conditions. Through a $15,000 grant from Highmark Blue Shield, the Schuylkill Alliance's safety net program, Health Care Access, will expand services so those individuals can stay on a health maintenance program and remain employable while on the path to find employment.

"This program is simple, but certainly needs support," said Judith Schweich, executive director of Schuylkill Alliance for Health Care Access. "One of our main goals is to ensure that individuals who are unemployed have access to health care. While they are pursuing employment, it's important that they continue to receive proper prescriptions and treatment for health needs. Our partnership with Highmark Blue Shield will help fill that much needed health care gap for individuals in Schuylkill County. It's imperative to the community that we continue in these efforts."

The Health Care Access program encourages access to primary and preventive care and helps reduce unnecessary use of emergency rooms as a resource for primary care. Through the use of a membership card, individuals can receive affordable care and a continuity of care and case management for their chronic conditions.

"This program is so important because it doesn't just provide greater access to care, but it helps serve as the catalyst for change for many individuals," said Susan Hubley, Highmark Blue Shield director of community affairs. "Schuylkill Alliance offers the assurance to our community that individuals don't have to compromise their health."

Since 2006, the Schuylkill Alliance for Health Care has provided more than $5 million in health care access, including prescriptions for its clients at a cost of less than $1 million. More than 3,000 Schuylkill county residents have used the program, with more than 1,100 currently enrolled.

For more information, or to enroll in the Schuylkill Alliance for Health Care, contact 570-628-5515.

About Highmark Blue Shield
Highmark Blue Shield serves approximately 1 million members through the company's health care benefits business and employs nearly 4,000 people in central Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley. Highmark Blue Shield is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies. For more information about Highmark Blue Shield, visit www.highmark.com.

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 37 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.