Columbia, S.C. -- Dr. Laura Long, vice president of clinical quality and health management at BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, will speak on a panel addressing Community Health and Wellness Best Practices in the "State of Our Health" conference to be held Tuesday in Columbia, S.C.
The panel also includes Vince Ford, senior vice president of Community Services for Palmetto Health Richland Hospital; Peter Leventis, S.C. Primary Health Care Association; and Judith Verona, manager of health and wellness at SCANA. This is one of several panel discussions in the conference.
Dr. Long will address how S.C. BlueCross works with employer groups to improve the health of their employees through wellness and disease management programs under BlueCross’ Total Population Health Management approach. BlueCross also works with community organizations to promote prevention and health education.
She also will discuss how BlueCross’ disease management program, implemented with its members since 2000, addresses seven chronic diseases that burden South Carolinians. Disease Management magazine recently published the results of a study showing that S.C. BlueCross members enrolled in the program were more compliant with their physicians’ orders for taking medication after receiving guidance, encouragement, or educational information from the program as a follow-up to their doctor’s visits.
"We try to address the whole health care continuum for our members, from the well and at-risk populations addressed through health risk assessments, onsite screenings and health coaching to the chronically ill. The biggest challenge is getting health plan groups’ management to buy into wellness initiatives and understand the cost justification," says Dr. Long.
The conference, to take place at the Marriott Columbia Hotel, includes keynote presentations on "National Health Care Quality Measurement and How South Carolina Compares" by Richard Sorian, National Committee for Quality Assurance; and "America’s Health Crisis," by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.
Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and its family of companies include more than 20 subsidiaries involved in health insurance services, U.S. DoD health plan and Medicare contracts, and other insurance and employee benefits services.