PARTNERS Medicare Products to Get Blue Hue

CHAPEL HILL, N.C.  – Medicare Advantage products offered by PARTNERS National Health Plans of North Carolina, Inc. are turning Blue.
 
On Jan. 1, 2008, PARTNERS Medicare Choice will become Blue Medicare HMO and PARTNERS Medicare Options will become Blue Medicare PPO. The product names are changing, but the service, reliability and provider networks PARTNERS members have depended upon for years will remain the same. PARTNERS has offered Medicare Advantage plans longer than any other company in the state.
 
PARTNERS is a wholly owned subsidiary of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC). BCBSNC, which bought PARTNERS in 2001, is the largest health insurer based in North Carolina.
 
“We acquired a real gem when we purchased PARTNERS in 2001, and we’ve continually worked to take advantage of our mutual strengths,” said BCBSNC President and CEO Bob Greczyn. “We will continue to make the most of our combined skills and experience to benefit North Carolinians who receive Medicare.”
 
PARTNERS members will continue to be served by their Winston-Salem based customer service team and have access to the same network of doctors and hospitals. BCBSNC continues to maintain an operations center in Winston-Salem, employing more than 650 people.
 
The name changes result from PARTNERS new relationship with the national Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA), an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans. PARTNERS is now an independent licensee of BCBSA, allowing it to take advantage of one of the best known health care brands in America.
 
Beginning Jan. 1, BCBSNC Medicare-related products will get new names as well. Its Medicare prescription drug plans will become Blue Medicare Rx, and its Medicare Supplemental plans will become Blue Medicare Supplement.
 
PARTNERS serves nearly 43,000 people through its Medicare Advantage plans. BCBSNC serves more than 51,000 people through its Medicare prescription drug plans and over 120,000 people through its Medicare Supplemental plans.
 
Beginning Jan. 1, 2008, both Blue Medicare HMO and Blue Medicare PPO will be available in 37 counties in North Carolina, including areas within the Triangle, Triad and Charlotte regions. BCBSNC’s Medicare prescription drug plans and Medicare Supplement plans are available in all counties in North Carolina.
 
 
About PARTNERS National Health Plans of North Carolina, Inc.:
PARTNERS National Health Plans of North Carolina, Inc. is a Medicare Advantage organization with a Medicare contract to provide HMO and PPO plans.  PARTNERS does not discriminate based on color, religion, national origin, age, race, disability, handicap, gender or health status as defined by CMS. PARTNERS is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
 
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina:
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is a leader in delivering innovative health care products, services and information to more than 3.5 million members, including approximately 820,000 served on behalf of other Blue Plans. For 74 years, the company has served its customers by offering health insurance at a competitive price and has served the people of North Carolina through support of community organizations, programs and events that promote good health. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Access BCBSNC online at bcbsnc.com.

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