Healthy Blue Beginnings is BCBSLA’s care management program for high-risk pregnancies. This program offers pregnant women personalized information and confidential support from experienced nurses throughout their pregnancy. In addition to referrals from individual physicians, BCBSLA receives referrals to Healthy Blue Beginnings from its relationship with Louisiana Women’s Healthcare Associates (LWHA), the largest OB/GYN physician group in the state of Louisiana. Obstetricians at LWHA refer patients to Healthy Blue Beginnings if they have one or more of a list of conditions that includes:
- History of preterm labor
- History of smoking
- Substance use disorder
In the 2020s, data is now an important healthcare partner, and data plays a part with high-risk pregnancy referrals, too. Recently, Blue Cross began receiving Admit, Discharge, Transfer (ADT) data from any healthcare provider that uses an electronic medical records system and has a capability to feed the insurer their data.
Another pregnancy support program is a unique texting service called text4baby. Whether or not a woman joins Healthy Blue Beginnings, BCBSLA encourages her to join text4baby. Moms get free text messages with health and safety tips for their pregnancy and baby’s first year. The messages are tailored based on due date or baby’s birth date. Just text the word BABY (BEBE for Spanish tips) to 511411 on your cellphone.
Stronger Than is a BCBSLA care management program that can connect women to these services listed above as well as a wide range of free or low-cost community services. One of these is Coffectiv, a coalition of community resources to support women before, during and after pregnancy. Find more at supportservices.bcbsla.com
BCBSLA employees and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation also support the health of babies and young children in a number of ways. The Foundation’s focus is on Louisiana children’s health and wellbeing, and many of its grants are awarded accordingly. One the Foundation’s most successful grantees, Fit NOLA, has recently expanded a program that lets doctors give “fruit and vegetable prescriptions” to pregnant women, people with diabetes and others, redeemable for free at local farmers’ markets. Blue Cross and its employees also donate their time and money to organizations like March of Dimes, which works to prevent birth defects.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, an association of independent, locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies.