May 9, 2023
Blue Cross Blue Shield is Part of Elevance Health Profiteering Empire Whose Business Model Relies on Denying Members Care
St. Louis, MO– Missouri Jobs with Justice and allies participated in the Care Over Cost Day of Action and rallied at private health insurer Blue Cross Blue Shield to demand the corporation stop denying care to its members and put people over profit. BCBS is part of the Elevance Health, formerly Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, profiteering empire whose business model relies on denying members care. Last year, Elevance reported $8.5 billion in profits. [Insert local stat on your Target]. The action comes a day before Elevance Health’s Shareholder Meeting.
A crowd of labor leaders, clergy, BCBS members, and healthcare advocates attempted to deliver their demands to Blue Cross Blue Shield in St. Louis – they were met with locked doors.
“I pay for my healthcare. I pay my deductible. I am a father of six and have a son with Cystic Fibrosis – and you won’t come out and talk to me?” said Ben Hartman, a Blue Cross Blue Shield member, AFT 420 organizer and veteran. “Come talk to us!” Fellow BCBS members pulled out their insurance cards and began chanting as the BCBS representatives refused to meet with their members.
At the event, labor leaders including American Federation of Teachers Local 420, SEIU Local 1, Fight for $15, Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice, Missouri Jobs with Justice leaders, veterans, healthcare advocates, and community members marched, shared their healthcare stories and chanted “Who are you, to decide, if we live, or if we die!?” Pictures of the action may be found here and video here.
Full letter of demands can be found here.BCBS-Demand-Letter-20230509
Missouri Jobs with Justice is a member of People’s Action Care Over Cost campaign that organizes people across the country to appeal and overturn insurance claim denials from private health insurers and to get people the care they need. Last November, Elevance Health refused to acknowledge the 70 Elevance members who visited their national headquarters.