In the Illinois Community

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois Celebrates 80 years with 80 for 80 Summer of Service

In 1936 the Chicago Transportation Authority (CTA) did not exist, the Willis Tower had not been built, the Chicago Sun-Times hadn’t published its first paper, and the Chicago Blackhawks had only one Stanley Cup, but we were already serving the people of Illinois. Since we’ve been serving our community for 80 years we plan on celebrating our anniversary by doing just that – giving back to the community we serve in what we call the “80 for 80 Summer of Service”.

Our employees will be volunteering over the next few months in 80 events around the state and you can follow our commitment to our community with the hashtag #2016SummerofService. Eighty events in the course of 12 weeks might sound like a lot, but last year our employees volunteered 60,000 hours at various events throughout the state.

Here’s a bit of a history lesson, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois was established after a group of Chicago civic leaders, hospital officials and physicians met in the midst of the Great Depression to find a solution to the critical problem of affordable health care in 1936. In 1936, they pooled their own resources and launched what was initially called the Chicago Plan for Hospital Care.

Fun facts – In Illinois, we were the first to provide:

  • Coverage for autologous bone marrow transplants
  • Coverage for heart transplants
  • Group health insurance to rural and small communities through county health improvement associations
  • The nation's first CareVan.

So now that you brushed up on some of our history, let’s get back to talking about how we plan on celebrating our eight decades. Our employees are the face and the heart of our organization.

They represent the best of what Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois is about. We are dedicated to helping the community where we work and play so we couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate than by giving back!


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