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BlueCross Employees and Foundation Present $17 Million to Support SC Nonprofits in 2014

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Columbia, S.C. – In a long tradition of statewide community service, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina employees and its foundation gave a total of $17.4 million to nonprofits and other institutions serving the state this year.

The BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina Foundation’s approval this month of $12.6 million in grant projects brings its total grants awarded to health care-related South Carolina nonprofits to $14.7 million for this year and $60.4 million since 2003.

In addition, BlueCross employees made monetary donations and raised funds to the tune of $2.7 million for corporate-sanctioned campaigns. Recipients included the South Carolina-based operations of the United Way, the March of Dimes, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the American Heart Association.

Besides personal donations and fundraising, employees also contributed 35,000 pounds of items to food banks and holiday gifts for more than 200 low-income families. Most of these campaigns took place at the Columbia offices where the majority of employees are located, but there also were fundraisers at offices in Charleston, Florence, Greenville, Surfside Beach and out-of-state sites. 

“As a South Carolina-based company that has been here for 68 years, we have a long tradition of community involvement through our Foundation’s grants and through the generous personal giving by my fellow BlueCross employees,” said BlueCross CEO David Pankau. “All of these efforts support projects across the state that directly impact our state’s most economically disadvantaged, and each one makes a difference.”

The Foundation grants approved this month include:

  • Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands (Fairfield, Kershaw, Lexington, Newberry and Richland counties), a one-year grant to enhance for three years the Triple Play Healthy Habits program. It helps clubs to meet national healthy eating and physical activity standards at 45 after-school sites reaching 5,200 students.
  • Charleston Southern University (North Charleston), a three-year grant to fund scholarships for nursing students who commit to work in home-based nursing.
  • Eat Smart Move More South Carolina (multiple counties) a three-year grant to expand mapping statewide and replicate the Let’s Go Colleton County program with other proven community-based ideas in six new counties.
  • Health Sciences South Carolina (statewide), a three-year grant for the South Carolina Surgical Quality Collaborative to establish a measurement and reporting infrastructure for a model learning health care system. The goal is to improve the quality of 15 surgical procedures.
  • Little River Medical Center (Horry County), a three-year grant for a pilot emergency dental clinic serving an estimated 1,900 uninsured patients five days per week at two locations.
  • Mothers’ Milk Bank of South Carolina (statewide), a one-year grant to purchase equipment for the sterilization process.
  • Our Lady of Mercy Community Outreach Services (Charleston County), a three-year grant to aid plans to increase dental services on Johns Island.
  • South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy (statewide), a three-year grant to support implementation of a national model to improve policies and processes at 12-18 clinical sites in several communities.
  • South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (statewide), a three-year grant to implement a quality improvement initiative. It will gather, assess and analyze health-related fitness education, testing, data management and reporting for all South Carolina public schools, impacting 740,000 students.
  • South Carolina Lions Charitable Services (statewide), a one-year grant to expand the eye surgery program to reach more uninsured state residents.
  • The Dream Center of Pickens (Pickens County), a three-year grant to fund equipment for expanded dental services and improved outcomes for uninsured adults.

BlueCross is one of the state’s largest companies, with a workforce of nearly 9,000 in South Carolina out of more than 11,000 corporate wide.

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 20 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.

About the BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina Foundation

Headquartered in Columbia, the foundation is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Its mission is to promote the health of South Carolinians and to expand access to health care in South Carolina for the economically disadvantaged by supporting integrated research, education and community service.