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BUSINESS
May 17, 1986 | By Gilbert M. Gaul, Inquirer Staff Writer
Blue Cross of Greater Philadelphia has been selected by the federal government to be one of 10 companies that will process Medicare home-health claims. While that may not sound like the greatest thing since sliced bread, consider the alternative. "We could have been out of the home-health business entirely," explained Eugene Ott, Blue Cross' senior vice president in charge of provider relations. As part of the 1984 Deficit Reduction Act, Medicare officials were instructed to pare the number of outside firms processing home-health-care claims from several dozen to 10 regional companies.
BUSINESS
December 10, 1993 | by Marc Meltzer, Daily News Staff Writer
The Department of Justice has begun an investigation to determine whether a clause in Independence Blue Cross' hospital contracts, designed to get the insurer the hospital's lowest rates, is anti-competitive. A Nov. 30 letter to state Insurance Commissioner Cynthia M. Maleski says the department would begin its investigation into Blue Cross' prudent-buyer clause within a few days "to determine whether it violates the federal antitrust laws. " It is signed by Steven Kramer, an attorney in the department's antitrust division.
NEWS
October 18, 1988 | By Robin Palley, Daily News Staff Writer
Thanks to amendments to proposed changes in the corporate structure of Blue Cross, subscribers will retain a voice in the board of directors of the giant health care insurance company, a Blue Cross official said last night. Blue Cross spokesman Dick Mendenhall said under the amendments passed last night at a subscribers' meeting, individuals can be nominated to the board if they submit petitions representing 5 percent of Blue Cross' subscribers. Formerly 10 percent was required.
BUSINESS
March 23, 1988 | By Gilbert M. Gaul, Inquirer Staff Writer
Blue Cross of Greater Philadelphia last year posted its largest gain in subscribers since 1969, adding nearly 60,000 new members, the health insurer reported at its annual meeting last night. Despite the nearly 3 percent increase in subscribers and a 16.5 percent increase in revenues, to $959 million, Blue Cross lost $38.3 million in 1987 as claims and operating expenses increased dramatically. The $38.3 million net loss was equal to 4 percent of Blue Cross' underwriting expenses of $954.
NEWS
January 12, 1989 | By Dave Racher, Daily News Staff Writer
Two pharmaceutical workers have been accused of swindling Blue Cross out of a total of $84,025 between June 1986 and September 1987 by submitting false claims. District Attorney Ronald D. Castille yesterday said he had the best prescription for the alleged fraud. He charged the two with theft by deception, forgery and conspiracy. The accused are Clarence Jackson, 33, of 17th Street near Wharton, and Curtis Webster, 30, of 12th Street near Jefferson. Prosecutor James Fitzpatrick, chief of the DA's economic crimes unit, said Jackson and Webster were stealing blank invoices while working at Lancaster Avenue Medical Supply, Lancaster Avenue near 41st Street.
NEWS
January 8, 1988 | By JOSEPH R. DAUGHEN, Daily News Staff Writer
The Blue Cross trust fund of the Fraternal Order of Police has been reorganized to remove it from the union president's control. FOP President Robert Hurst, who supported the reorganization, said it was "important" to place the fund's $2.2 million balance "beyond the reach of whoever happens to be sitting in the president's chair. " The fund, Law Enforcement Health Benefits, has been separately incorporated as a non-profit organization governed by a nine-member board, said board chairman Richard B. Costello.
NEWS
May 19, 1987 | By Gilbert M. Gaul, Inquirer Staff Writer
A huge backlog of claims to Blue Cross of Greater Philadelphia for major- medical insurance payments has been slashed to a near-normal level. The backlog is down to about 11,000 claims from a high of more than 60,000 in January. A spokesman said the insurer's processing schedule was expected to be back to normal by June. "I fully believe in two weeks we'll have it down to 8,000 or less . . . a level that's normal for this time of year," James R. Vivian, director of the major-medical section, said in an interview last Friday.
NEWS
August 19, 1986 | By Gilbert M. Gaul, Inquirer Staff Writer
In an important break with the past, Blue Cross and Blue Shield insurance plans would lose their 50-year-old exemption under the sweeping revision of the tax code agreed upon over the weekend. The bill approved by a House-Senate conference committee calls for the nonprofit insurance plans to pay taxes based on their annual earnings and on how much money they have in their reserves. The tax on the Blues is expected to add about $800 million to the Treasury's coffers over a five-year period.
NEWS
February 2, 1986
It appears that a reasonably salient point has been overlooked in the articles on the surplus in the Blue Cross "reserves. " From personal experience I can truthfully hypothesize that much of this surplus has come from the pockets of those covered by the various plans, both as individual subscribers and as those covered under a plan provided by their employers in lieu of additional direct wages. When the hospitalization plan allows only a partial portion of actual billing amount, as reimbursement to subscribers whose physicians are non- participating, the plan is limiting its expenses while increasing the outlay of the average card holder.
BUSINESS
March 15, 1989 | By Sheila Simmons, Daily News Staff Writer
Several Independence Blue Cross subscribers lashed out against the company's leadership yesterday, then prepared for battle against the process that elects the organization's board of directors. The protesters contended that Blue Cross manipulates its board's elections to guarantee selection of candidates favored by the company's management. Five subscribers, vowing to advocate subscriber rights, submitted their own nomination petitions for the company's 30-member board. "This is the opening gun in a battle against the completely undemocratic electoral process," said Max Weiner, educational director of the Consumers Education and Protective Association, which sparked the challenge.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
BUSINESS
March 4, 2016 | By Harold Brubaker, STAFF WRITER
Independence Blue Cross and Thomas Jefferson University on Wednesday announced the first participants in their joint Entrepreneurs-in-Residence program. Two teams at Jefferson were awarded $150,000 each to support projects addressing surgical treatment of complex epilepsy and bone graft and joint replacement infection. Jefferson researchers Noreen Hickok and Irving Shapiro are working with Rothman Institute orthopedic surgeon Jay Parvizi to pursue new ways to make a longer-lasting antibiotic coating for use in bone grafts of donated tissue and replacement joints for orthopedic surgeries.
NEWS
February 7, 2016 | By Jacob Adelman, STAFF WRITER
Independence Blue Cross has begun moving staff of its AmeriHealth Administrators subsidiary from two suburban offices into the newly renovated 1900 Market St. office building in Center City. The staffers were relocated from Horsham and Fort Washington to the building that "better reflects and supports AHA's collaborative culture and accommodates future growth," Independence spokeswoman Elizabeth H. Sell said Friday in a statement. The insurance provider now occupies 113,000 square feet of the 228,000 square feet that it plans to fill at the building, according its owner Brandywine Realty Trust.
NEWS
December 29, 2015 | Natalie Pompilio, Daily News
Zamboni driver Kristen Sullivan learned how to run one of the 11,000-pound ice resurfacers while she was a student at the State University of New York in Cortland. The Maple Shade High School graduate went on to complete her degree in Outdoor Recreation with a concentration in Outdoor Leadership while also picking up the ins and outs of the massive ice machine. Now 26, Sullivan is putting all of that learning to good use, working full-time running a recess leadership program at a Northeast Philadelphia elementary school and spending nights and weekends at the Blue Cross RiverRink.
BUSINESS
December 19, 2015 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Staff Writer
No matter who wins next year's presidential election, it's a sure bet that the new leader will want to tinker with the Affordable Care Act, says Independence Blue Cross CEO Daniel J. Hilferty. And when it happens, Hilferty wants to be at the table. "From a Blue insurers' perspective, we want it to work," said Hilferty, who, effective immediately, will become board chairman of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association of America. The job, while unpaid, comes with clout. The association provides health insurance to 105 million people, or a third of the nation, through 36 Blue Cross and Blue Shield member companies, including Independence, this region's largest insurer.
BUSINESS
September 26, 2015 | By Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association on Thursday unveiled an expanded database that will help individual Blues, like Philadelphia's Independence, drill down into the cost of care for their corporate customers who have operations nationwide. "We as Blues are taking seriously the challenge of, while maintaining our individual nature, being seen as a national player," said Daniel J. Hilferty, chief executive of Independence Health Group, parent of Independence Blue Cross. The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, whose members cover 105 million Americans, has maintained a claims database for a decade, and Independence has contributed for years.
BUSINESS
August 24, 2015 | By Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer
The tsunami of mergers announced last month - Aetna's purchase of Humana and Anthem's purchase of Cigna - is expected to transform the health insurance industry, if the deals survive antitrust scrutiny by regulators. The consolidation will create three national giants, including UnitedHealth Group Inc., each with more than $100 billion in annual revenue, and add to the pressure on smaller Blue Cross-Blue Shield operators to merge. But don't count Independence Blue Cross, the region's largest health insurer and a major Center City employer, among those on the ropes.
NEWS
May 27, 2015
ISSUE | SCHOOLS Priorities skewed It's ironic that the School District is spending more than $1.37 million to suppress an employee's freedom of speech while one of its neighborhood schools, with which I am familiar - Emlen Elementary - has to rely on charity and volunteers to provide its students with a school library ("Blow the whistle," May 21). |Deborah Grill, Philadelphia ISSUE | NEW JAIL Different pocket Although Jim Kenney objects to building a new House of Correction because the schools need the money, the funds to build would come from the capital budget - not the operating budget, where money for school funding emanates.
BUSINESS
December 28, 2014 | By Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer
Independence Blue Cross on Friday disclosed a data breach affecting 12,500 of its more than 2.5 million members. Unlike most high-profile cases of personal data loss, such as the one at Target stores last year affecting 70 million people, the IBC case did not involve computers. The incident happened in October, when maintenance workers threw out four boxes of member records that were supposed to be moved from one floor to another at IBC's offices, the company said Friday in a legal notice.
NEWS
November 21, 2014
ISSUE | CULTURE Back to childhood I completely agree with a recent letter writer's view of what in my assessment has become the Taney Dragons Little League fiasco ("Young needlessly caught up in fame game," Nov. 13). The publicity about the team's on-field and subsequent exploits has transcended all logic, reasonableness, and newsworthiness. Most importantly, it has the potential to permanently damage the kids involved psychologically - especially the featured star. Let's put a stop to yet another example of our culture's sports madness and protect the Dragons.
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