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Blue & You - Summer 2011

BlueCares team reaches out to storm victims; Why our doctors are good for you; Program helps children; SilverSneakers blends cultures, creates friendships with asthma

BlueCares team reaches out to storm victims;
Why our doctors are good for you; Program helps children;
SilverSneakers blends cultures, creates friendships with asthma

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Summer 11

A publication for the policyholders of

the Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield

family of companies

• Why our doctors are

good for you, Page 6

• Program helps children

with asthma, Page 16

BlueCares team

reaches out to storm

victims, Page 22


Sachiko Halter of

Conway gracefully

performs tai chi,

one of several

exercise classes

she enjoys through

the SilverSneakers

program.

on Page 10

On the Cover:

BlueCares — Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield

employees serve food to victims and workers after the

storms that hit Vilonia, Ark., in recent weeks. See the

story on Page 22.

INSIDE

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Out of the Blue

Personal Health Statements coming to

Health Advantage members

Individual plan prescription drug benefits change

Why our doctors are good for you

NSAIDs shouldn’t be taken after heart attack

Store dabigatran in original container

SilverSneakers blends cultures, creates friendships

Lifelong Health with Dr. David

Are teens fretting about Facebook?

Lose weight The Healthy Weigh!

Baby on Board: Use rear-facing car safety seats

at least until age 2

New education program helps children with asthma

breathe easier

Individual/family policies can make changes

in October

$1,000 health-improvement grants go fast

From the Pharmacist — FDA decision removes

unapproved drugs from market

Alternatives to treating colic

The Doctor’s Corner

Employees rally to serve after storms

Blue News

Financial Information Privacy Notice

Customer Service telephone numbers

Good for you

Summer 11

is published four times a year by

Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield for

the company’s members, health care

professionals and other persons

interested in health care and wellness.

Editor: Kelly Whitehorn — bnyou-ed@arkbluecross.com

Assistant Editor: Jennifer Gordon

Designer: Gio Bruno Photographer: Chip Bayer

Contributors: Chip Bayer, Matthew Creasman, Damona Fisher, Kristy Fleming,

Trey Hankins, Heather Iacobacci-Miller, Ryan Kravitz, Kathy Luzietti and

Mark Morehead

Vice President, Communications and Product Development: Karen Raley


Out of the

Blue

A message from our

CEO and President,

Mark White

Corporate social responsibility in

difficult times

The devastation from numerous tornadoes, ongoing

storms and massive flooding throughout Arkansas this

spring was horrific, but the actions of so many in the

following days and weeks reaffirmed to me one of the

great things about Arkansans … we support each other

and work together in times of need.

At Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield, compassion

is part of our culture; our employees not only take care

of each other in difficult times, but they seek out opportunities

to help causes around the globe. And, when

it is our own communities that are in need, our employees

embrace that mission with even more passion.

Corporate social responsibility means that what

is good for a community is good for business. It’s a

“shared value.” Businesses have a vested interest in

doing what’s best for their communities, whether it be

through financial support, volunteer work or just being

there in times of need. And, when the needs of the

community and business objectives align … it’s good

for everyone.

During this last natural disaster in our state, some

of our own employees suffered damage or lost their

homes. As our employees reached out to them, we

reached out to our members as well.

Arkansas Blue Cross helped those hurt by the storms

by waiving prescription costs for our members who

were storm victims and whose pharmacy benefit plan

is managed by Arkansas Blue Cross. A number of our

employees served lunch to volunteers helping Vilonia

citizens recovering from the tornadoes. And, our

employees reached deep into their own wallets and

donated to a relief fund for the Arkansas Chapter of the

American Red Cross.

Being a good corporate citizen also means finding

ways to improve our communities on a daily basis,

promoting health and wellness activities among our

citizens, and encouraging positive behaviors through

programs that support our members in their healthy

lifestyles. We are proud of projects like The Medical

Mile in Little Rock’s Riverfront Park and our ongoing

Blue & You Fitness Challenge, which engages thousands

of participants each year.

Just because we say we are a company that values

social responsibility doesn’t make it so … we must continually

monitor our engagement to be certain that our

actions reflect our values. We share our commitment to

our local communities through grants from the Blue &

You Foundation for a Healthier Arkansas, by investing in

Responsibility, continued on Page 4

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Blue & You Summer 2011


Responsibility, continued from Page 3

our health care system through supporting the education

of future physicians at the University of Arkansas have a need you think the BlueCares team can help

ing a hand in communities throughout Arkansas. If you

for Medical Sciences, and through our Enterprise with, feel free to contact us.

Employees’ Committee (an internal group consisting of Here’s hoping we are blessed the rest of this year

our own employees), which finds opportunities for our with blue skies and gentle rain showers. However, if

employees to serve the community through fundraisers,

food drives and special events.

is some other emergency, I know the folks at Arkansas

the storms make their way back to our state, or there

In the next few months, you may hear about a group Blue Cross will be ready and willing to do what we can

of employees from Arkansas Blue Cross called the to help our neighbors and our communities. Because at

BlueCares team. These highly motivated individuals are Arkansas Blue Cross, that’s what we do. And it’s good

dedicated to helping whenever and wherever they are for all of us.

needed. They will be at fund-raising events and lend-

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Personal Health Statements

coming to Health Advantage members

Health Advantage members will see a different

communication on their health care benefits beginning

this summer with the upgrade to the new Personal

Health Statement (PHS).

The PHS replaces the Explanation of Benefits (EOB),

which was generated every time we received a claim

from your doctor or hospital. The PHS is more comprehensive

than the EOB and designed to make claims

processing easier to understand.

The PHS includes:

• A better description of the discounts you receive on

your health care services.

• Information on how to get in touch with us.

• A quick understanding of how much you owe

and to whom.

• A section that shows you your personal health benefits

and tracks where you are in meeting deductibles

and out-of-pocket maximums.

Pharmacy information has been added, including

generic medications recommendations. Other features

on the new PHS are personal health messages and

reminders to get health screenings.

The new PHS will be issued two times a month

instead of every time a claim is filed. If you only have

pharmacy claims during a month, the PHS will be

issued quarterly.

Members still have the option to confidentially view

their PHS electronically. To sign up for a notification

e-mail when a new PHS is generated, you can go online

and sign up through the My Blueprint member selfservice

center.

Blue & You Summer 2011


Prescription drug benefits change

on individual health plan

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Customer feedback has led

to an exciting change in prescription

drug benefits for some of our

policyholders. Arkansas Blue Cross

and Blue Shield modified the prescription

drug benefit on its Comprehensive

Blue PPO III health plan,

effective May 1, 2011.

A popular feature for members,

the $10 copayment for generic

medications on the plan’s drug list

or “formulary,” remains the same.

However, members began paying

a flat copayment amount for

other prescription medications on

the drug list rather than paying the

previously required deductible and

coinsurance:

• $35 copayment for preferred

brand-name prescription drugs.

• $70 copayment for non-preferred

brand-name drugs.

The prescription drug list remains

the same, as do monthly premiums.

Members will continue to use their

current member ID card and have

their prescriptions filled the

same way.

“We are pleased to offer this benefit

enhancement for individuals and

families,” said Ron DeBerry, senior

vice president of Statewide Business.

“This health plan has been

available since Jan. 1, 2011. And,

because it is a new plan, Arkansas

Blue Cross reviewed all of our

members’ prescription claims —

back to January 1, or their original

effective date — to ensure they had

not paid out more with the old drug

benefit than they would have with

the new drug benefit structure. For

those who had paid out more, we

issued a refund.”

Members who have questions

about the prescription drug benefit

change, may call Customer Service

at 1-800-863-5561.

For more information about health

plans for individuals and families,

visit arkansasbluecross.com or call

1-800-392-2583.

Blue & You Summer 2011


Why our doctors are

good for you

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The Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield Medical

Management Division recently reorganized to intensify

our focus on quality. Why? Because quality health care

Our Medical

Management

Division is led by 13

physicians. For a breakdown

of their titles, locations and

specialties, see the legend on the

following page.

improves our members’ quality of life.

What is quality health care? It is care that helps you

protect your health by promoting a healthy lifestyle and

provides you with treatments that are proven to be effective

through the course of your lifetime. Quality care

is efficient care that does

more than sustain life — it

makes life

better

for you

and your

loved

ones.

Focusing

on

Quality

“The goal

of every

doctor and

hospital is to

provide quality

health care,

which can be

defined as the

right evaluation and

treatment at the right

time done the right

way in the right setting,”

said Robert Griffin,

M.D., senior vice president

and chief medical officer

for Arkansas Blue Cross. “The

goal for Arkansas Blue Cross is

Blue & You Summer 2011


to provide doctors and hospitals with the support they

need to attain those goals, by analyzing the barriers that

may keep patients from getting the care they need, and

then proposing and assisting with strategies to overcome

the barriers.”

An example where health plans may be able to

help, Dr. Griffin said, is cardiac rehabilitation programs,

Quality health

care helps you

protect your health

by promoting a

healthy lifestyle

and provides you

with treatments

that are proven to

be effective over

the course of your

which provide education

and support to improve fitness,

diet, cholesterol and

stress management after a

cardiac event. According to

the Centers for Medicare &

Medicaid Services (CMS),

nationally fewer than 20 percent

of patients who qualify

for cardiac rehab actually do

it. Women participate at an

even lower rate.

“What we know is, if you do cardiac rehab, you are

less likely to have another cardiac event within the next

few years,” Dr. Griffin said. In fact, he added, a Kaiser

Family Foundation report showed that in a 10-year, allcost

survival study, people who did cardiac rehab had a

much better chance of survival for more than 10 years

than those who didn’t. By looking at possible barriers

keeping people from participating in cardiac rehab, Dr.

Griffin said, Arkansas Blue Cross may be able to find

ways to improve participation, especially among women.

“We would be improving quality of care and quality

of life while reducing overall costs at the same time,”

he said.

lifetime.

Examining the Data

The Medical Management Division at Arkansas Blue

Cross also helps you and your doctors by providing the

latest health and medical data available. Arkansas Blue

Cross accesses national data through the Blue Cross

and Blue Shield Association’s Technology Evaluation

Center (TEC), Blue Health Intelligence (BHI), and shares

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Our medical team, including their titles, locations and specialties:

1. James Adamson, M.D., medical officer for National Accounts, Little

Rock (pulmonary disease); 2. Robert Griffin, M.D., chief medical officer,

Little Rock (general surgery); 3. Kimberly Davis, M.D., medical director,

Pine Bluff (family medicine); 4. Sidney P. Hayes, M.D., Medicare medical

director, North Little Rock (pulmonary disease); 5. Connie Meeks,

M.D., corporate medical director for Internal Affairs, Little Rock (family

medicine); 6. Mike Martin, M.D., medical director, Texarkana and Hot

Springs (internal medicine); 7. Cygnet Schroeder, D.O., medical director,

Fort Smith (physical medicine); 8. Al Thomas, M.D., medical director,

Little Rock (ophthalmology); 9. Vic Snyder, M.D., corporate medical

director for External Affairs, Little Rock (family medicine); 10. Clement

Fox, M.D., medical director for Health Advantage and central Arkansas,

Little Rock (pulmonary disease); 11. Bert Price, M.D., medical director,

Jonesboro (psychiatry); 12. Raymond Bredfeldt, M.D., medical director,

Fayetteville (family medicine); 13. Roberta Monson, M.D., medical

director, Little Rock (internal medicine/infectious disease).

information on the Blue Distinction Centers for

Specialty Care ® .

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TEC is one of only 14 centers selected by the federal

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)

to assess the effectiveness and safety of medical

procedures, devices or drugs based on evidence.

TEC provides objective information based on clinical

and scientific evidence. The assessments answer the

important question of whether a technology’s benefits

exceed its harms. Knowing which treatments work best

helps ensure you receive the safest, most effective

care available.

BHI is the nation’s largest health care claims database,

developed by participating Blue Cross and Blue

Shield companies. BHI provides insight into health care

trends and best practices but removes all personal

information from the data. Through BHI, an employer

could learn that his employees are collectively at a

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Blue & You Summer 2011

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high risk for back injuries, and could use that information

to put better safety measures in place. In the

future, doctors could use the information to determine

best practices for specific health issues and individuals

could learn which health concerns are highest in their

geographical area.

Blue Distinction ® is a designation awarded to medical

facilities that have demonstrated expertise in delivering

quality health care. Its goal is to help members find

quality specialty care while encouraging health care

professionals to improve the overall quality and delivery

of care nationwide. The six specialty areas of care are:

• Bariatric surgery

• Cardiac care

• Complex and rare cancers

• Knee and hip replacement

• Spine surgery

• Transplants

Playing to Strengths

Part of Medical Management’s realignment involves

playing to the strengths already available within the

staff, Dr. Griffin said. “We have tremendous talent with

our regional medical directors,” Dr. Griffin said, explaining

that each one has a specialty, and while they have

oversight of the medical activities within their geographic

region and have established relationships with

physicians and facilities locally, they periodically share

their expertise with providers and facilities in counties

outside their region. (The medical directors, and their

specialties, are listed in the photo on the previous page.)

Enhancing Case Management

If you are healthy, you may not be aware of the case

managers who work at Arkansas Blue Cross, but if you

develop a severe illness or have a catastrophic health

issue, you can be sure one of them will be there if you

need assistance. Arkansas Blue Cross case managers

are there to help you as you move from a hospital to a

rehabilitation facility or back home. They help you to better

understand your condition and what you can do to

improve your health status. They can help you set shortterm

and long-term goals and to track your progress

toward those goals. They will work with your physician

and your caregiver to help support your individual care

plan and they will help you plan to get the most out of

your office visit by developing specific questions for

your physician before your visit. However, they cannot

provide specific medical advice or treatment.

Case managers are located in each regional office

and at the main office in Little Rock. If you feel you

need assistance through case management and we

have not contacted you, you can reach a case manager

through your regional office. Originally, case managers

focused only on a geographical area, but under the new

realignment of medical management, some specialized

case managers will be available to share their expertise

across regions for members with a specific medical

condition. “We may have a case manager in one region

who is superb in dealing with neurological disorders,

and we want to share that talent across the state,

rather than having one region stronger in that area,” Dr.

Griffin said.

“A lot of people don’t know

who we are or what we do,”

said Rochelle Nix, a case manager

in the Pine Bluff office.

Rochelle’s recent work with

a member who has multiple

myeloma, a cancer of the blood,

is a good example of how our case managers can help.

“Jason” was overwhelmed by his diagnosis and the

amount of medical terminology thrown at him, but Rochelle

was able to explain the medical information and

provide additional information on his medical coverage.

Because Jason needed a stem cell transplant, Rochelle

worked closely with the corporate transplant coordinator,

who provided her with the details of the transplant.

Rochelle then was able to explain it to Jason. Later,

Rochelle

Nix

Blue & You Summer 2011


after Jason told Rochelle he was confused by all the

bills he was receiving, Rochelle asked him to drop them

off at the regional office, and the office staff created

a spread sheet for him that showed which bills were

under the transplant global reimbursement and which

were not.

The biggest change in Jason came when he started

calling Rochelle to let her know that he already had handled

a situation. She said he still needed the encouragement,

but was confident enough, and understood the

medical terminology enough, to handle it on his own.

When he called to say he was in remission, the entire

office cheered. Jason stops by the Pine Bluff office on

occasion to visit his friends, which is who Rochelle and

the others have become.

Existing Programs

Keeping you healthy isn’t anything new for Arkansas

Blue Cross. Our health education programs offer

expecting mothers guidance on getting ready for their

newborns, and help adults and kids with chronic illnesses

like diabetes and asthma. If you’re one of many who

have low back pain, we can help there, too. And, if you

haven’t already, check out our Web sites for discounts

to fitness centers and weight-loss programs throughout

the state. Arkansas Blue Cross is good for you no matter

if you are healthy and want to stay that way, or need

some help getting back into more healthy habits.

Keeping You Well

So, is wellness really an important part of Arkansas

Blue Cross’ business? “A major portion of our national

health care needs would not exist if people had a better

diet, exercised appropriately, didn’t smoke or use tobacco

products of any kind and only consumed alcohol

in reasonable quantities,” said Dr. Griffin. “And, wellness

improves the health status of our members. So, along

with outstanding customer service and operations, we

promote wellness. And that is another way we continue

to be good for you.”

Using nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

(NSAIDs) — even for brief periods — after a heart attack

increases your risk for another heart attack and death,

according to a study in the American Heart Association

journal, Circulation.

Researchers in Denmark identified more than 80,000

patients who’d been treated for a first heart attack and

then studied the prescriptions they received afterward.

More than 40 percent of patients received at least one

prescription for an NSAID after their heart attacks.

Risks of another heart attack or death were significantly

higher during treatment with all NSAIDs, but

Diclofenac (sold under the brand name Voltaren) had

the greatest risk. Naproxen had the lowest risk.

The authors say their results indicate, “there is no apparent

safe therapeutic window” for NSAIDs in patients

with a prior heart attack.

NSAIDs

shouldn’t be

taken after

heart

attack

Store dabigatran in

original container

If you take the medication dabigatran, also known

by the brand name Pradaxa, you only should store it in

its original container, according to the U.S. Food and

Drug Administration (FDA). Dabigatran is an anticoagulant,

which means it prevents blood clots.

Dabigatran comes in bottles and in blister packets

that seal out moisture. After the pills have been exposed

to air, they must be used within 60 days. If you

move the medication to a pill organizer or pill box, or

take the pills out of the blister packet, the humidity in

the air may cause it to lose its potency.

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Blue & You Summer 2011


SilverSneakers blends

cultures, creates friendships

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Sachiko Halter

(foreground) and Alicia

Kow (background)

move through tai chi

poses during a class at

the Conway Regional

Health and Fitness

Center.

As she gracefully moves

from one tai chi position to the

next, Sachiko Halter glows with

confidence and quiet strength.

It’s hard to imagine that a few

years ago she was shy around

people outside her family, but

that was before a letter arrived

in the mail from Arkansas Blue

Cross and Blue Shield.

Sachiko is originally from

Kitakyushu, Kokura, Japan, on

the southern island of Kyushu.

She came to the United States

as a young woman and eventually

settled in Conway, Ark. She

and her husband, Victor Halter,

have six children between them

and nine grandchildren.

While Sachiko was very busy

with family, she was lonely. “I

have a wonderful husband,” she

said, “but I missed ‘girl talk.’

Some days I think the only time

I talked to someone besides my

husband was when I went to the

grocery store,” she said, “and

that was to say if I wanted paper

or plastic!”

When Sachiko turned 65,

Arkansas Blue Cross sent her a

Blue & You Summer 2011


letter inviting her to learn more about the SilverSneakers

® Fitness Program. She said

she was a little nervous at the thought

of exercising in a group, which she

had never done, but she wanted to

learn more.

“When I heard that Arkansas

Blue Cross offers SilverSneakers

for free, I just jumped right in!”

she said. SilverSneakers is the

nation’s leading exercise program

designed exclusively for older adults,

offering an innovative blend of physical

activity, healthy lifestyles and socially

oriented programming. SilverSneakers

is available to Arkansas Blue Cross Medi-Pak ®

and Medi-Pak Advantage (PFFS) members at no

additional cost at wellness centers, YMCAs and Curves ®

locations in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Washington.

Sachiko started taking SilverSneakers classes at the

Conway Regional Health and Fitness Center four years

ago. Now, at age 69, Sachiko says she attends classes

five days a week. With several SilverSneakers classes

to choose from, including the Silver Splash class,

Sachiko stays busy. But her favorite class is tai chi.

Tai chi chuan, or simply tai chi, was developed more

than 2,000 years ago in China. It is a graceful form of

exercise used for stress reduction and other health

conditions, like joint pain. A study by the University of

California Los Angeles showed significant benefits of

tai chi in the management of late-life depression. The

American Geriatrics Society also recently encouraged

exercise, like tai chi, for balance, gait and strength

training.

Sachiko enjoys tai chi so much that for a while she

took additional classes at the University of Central

Arkansas and became a certified instructor herself. But

when Alicia “Siaw-Khian” Kow, became the instructor

at the Conway Regional Health and Fitness Center,

she said she realized that she didn’t need to

go outside of the fitness center. Alicia,

who is originally from Malaysia, often

travels back to her home country

and to China to attend tai chi and

qigong training sessions with

masters of these arts. Sachiko

can lead the class if Alicia is away,

but said she enjoys learning from

such a skilled teacher.

A big part of that enjoyment

comes from her classmates. The

class gathers in a circle as soft music

fills the air and they breathe and

move as one, shifting their weight slowly

from one foot to the other, hands cupped

as if holding a ball of energy. The hushed

instructions from Alicia quickly give way to giggles and

smiles from the class as they take a break. The women

have a special bond and once a week members of the

tai chi and Silver Splash classes go out to lunch, something

that Sachiko truly enjoys.

Alicia said she has seen amazing changes in each

of the women since they joined the class. For some,

it is subtle, as stiff muscles learn to relax; for others

it is drastic, like a 30-point drop in blood pressure. For

Sachiko, it is personal, enjoying the company of women

so much like her, but who grew up in a culture so different

than her own.

“SilverSneakers is one of the best things to happen

to me,” she said.

For more information on SilverSneakers, call 1-888-

423-4632 or visit silversneakers.com.

SilverSneakers ® is a registered mark of Healthways, Inc.

The SilverSneakers Fitness Program is provided by

Healthways, Inc., an independent company that operates

separately from Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield.

Source: americantaichi.net

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Blue & You Summer 2011


Lifelong Health

with Dr. David

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A simple diet plan containing

proven super foods promotes

a longer and better life

Want to live as long and as healthy as possible? Including

super foods in your diet can make you healthier

by adding fiber, vitamins, minerals, omega 3 fatty acids

and unique compounds that have significant health

benefits.

David A. Lipschitz,

M.D., Ph.D.

Although it is possible to obtain pills, powders and

shakes containing these substances, the message is

clear — the best way to get these healthy nutrients is

to eat the natural foods containing them. Consider this

diet plan, which contains the most valuable super foods

offering the chance of promoting health, preventing disease

and reducing the risks of obesity. Ideally eat three

meals daily and at least three appropriate snacks. This

balanced approach will minimize overeating and prevent

weight gain.

Breakfast

• Eat plenty of fiber. The best breakfast is either a

high-fiber cereal or oatmeal that contains soluble

and insoluble fiber to promote intestinal function,

reduce the risk of cancer and lower cholesterol.

Soluble fiber found in oatmeal dramatically can lower

cholesterol and promote heart health. Insoluble fiber

adds bulk to the diet, promotes normal bowel function,

decreases constipation and lowers the risk of

irritable bowel syndrome.

• Add half a cup of blueberries to breakfast. Compared

to any other fruit, blueberries contain the

highest concentration of antioxidants that promote

cellular health and prevent cancer and heart disease.

Research conducted by the National Institute on Aging

shows that blueberries prolong life expectancy,

reduce cholesterol levels and produce anthocyanin,

which improves vision. Pterostilbene found in blueberries

promotes brain function. Add fat-free or lowfat

milk to complete the meal. Consider 2 percent

organic milk that contains the ideal omega 3 fatty

acids rather than the unhealthy omega 6 fatty acids

found in milk from corn-fed animals.

Blue & You Summer 2011


Editor’s Note: David A. Lipschitz, M.D., Ph.D., is nationally

recognized as a leader in the field of geriatrics.

Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield is honored to have

him as a contributor to Blue & You magazine.

Lunch and Dinner

• Have a salad for one meal. Consider a large salad

consisting of mixed greens, as many colored vegetables

as possible and a low-fat protein source

(chicken or fish). Use a delicious low-fat dressing in

moderation. The more color in the salad, the greater

the concentration of antioxidants. A salad like this

provides ideal concentrations of vitamins such as C,

folic acid, beta carotene and lycopene, which prevents

vision loss. Salads also provide fiber, the best

fats and if eaten slowly, prevent hunger and promote

weight loss.

• Make sure you include the right foods in your

meal. A healthy lunch or dinner includes protein

(tofu, lean meat or fatty fish), two servings of a

starch (no more than two-thirds the size of your fist)

and plenty of fruits and vegetables.

• The benefits of red wine. If you can, have one or

two glasses of red wine with your evening meal. In

addition to containing rich amounts of antioxidants,

red wine contains resveratrol, a unique molecule

that may promote life expectancy and reduce

heart attacks.

Snacks

• An ounce of walnuts. Consider

walnuts as an afternoon snack, or

add an ounce to a salad. Walnuts

are the nuts with the highest concentration

of antioxidants, providing

more than an average person obtains

from all the fruits and vegetables consumed

daily. Nuts are rich in fiber and omega 3 fatty acids,

which reduce cholesterol, heart-disease risk, cancer

and perhaps Alzheimer’s Disease.

• Apples. Try and eat at least two apples daily. A study

conducted by researchers at Florida State University

has shown that two, rather than one apple a day,

significantly lowers cholesterol, reduces inflammation,

decreases the risk of heart attack and stroke

and, without dieting, promotes an average loss of

three pounds annually. Apples are rich in pectin, a

soluble fiber that lowers cholesterol. Always eat the

peel, which contains the highest concentrations of

antioxidants.

• Cocoa. Last, but not least, have a glass of warm cocoa

about an hour before bedtime. Recent research

has shown that cocoa reduces blood pressure,

lowers cholesterol and appears to lower the risk of

diabetes by making the body more sensitive to insulin.

Furthermore, a light snack before bed promotes

better sleep.

Splurging

The message is clear

— the best way to

get these healthy

nutrients is to eat

the natural foods

containing them.

We all splurge, but do not do this every night. It is

OK to have a rich dessert or high-calorie food on occasion,

but do not do it every day. And, most

importantly, watch portion size. A small

baked potato with a low-calorie dressing

is much better that a large one with all

the trimmings.

So there you have it. Whatever you

do, avoid the temptation of substituting

a pill for the real thing. Until proven

otherwise, assume that the pills may cause

more harm than good. Follow this approach to

eating, splurge no more than twice a week and you

have set the course for a long, disease-free life.

13

Blue & You Summer 2011


14

Your teen probably isn’t the only person in your household that

stays connected to family and friends through the social networking

site, Facebook. However, using Facebook is not without risks for teens,

according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Why are doctors worried?

With the friends of teens constantly adding new friends, updating

their “status” with recent fun outings or activities, and adding photo

upon photo of good times, it’s a tough landscape for teens who are

already dealing with self-esteem or depression issues.

Parents are encouraged to talk to their teens about online use and

be aware of the risks including depression, self-esteem issues or even

“cyberbullying” (when teens may post judgmental comments or inappropriate

remarks about others).

Remember, Facebook also can help kids feel more socially connected.

As with all things involving parenting, it’s just important to stay

connected to your child — in person.

Are teens

fretting

about

Facebook?

Lose

weight

The Healthy

Weigh!

The Healthy Weigh! Education

Program is free for members of

Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield,

Health Advantage (except ARHealth

members*), Blue Cross and Blue

Shield Service Benefit Plan (Federal

Employee Program), Medi-Pak ® Advantage

(PFFS), Medi-Pak Advantage PPO

and eligible members of BlueAdvantage

Administrators of Arkansas.

To enroll, complete the attached

enrollment form and return it in the

self-addressed, postage-paid envelope

included in this magazine. The program

starts when you enroll.

After enrollment, you will begin to

receive information through the mail,

which you can read in the privacy of

your own home and at your own pace.

The program is completely voluntary,

and you may leave the program at any

time. If you have further questions

about the program, call the Health

Education Program’s toll-free number

at 1-800-686-2609.

* Arkansas state and public school

employees and retirees can access the

“Nourish” program through LifeSynch.

Simply complete, sign and return the

attached enrollment form in the selfaddressed,

postage-paid envelope to join

The Healthy Weigh!

Blue & You Summer 2011


Baby on Board:

Use rear-facing car

safety seats at least

until age 2

How can you protect your

“precious cargo?” Put them in

the back seat, turn them around

and buckle them down.

The American Academy of

Pediatrics (AAP), recently recommended

that all infants ride

in the back seat of all vehicles,

in rear-facing car safety seats,

starting with their first ride

home from the hospital and continuing

until they are 2 years of

age or until they reach the highest

weight or height allowed by

the car safety seat’s manufacturer.

Sadly, according to AAP,

motor vehicle crashes are the

leading cause of death for children

4 years old and older.

Types of rear-facing

car safety seats

There are three types of rearfacing

car safety seats: infantonly

seats, convertible seats and

Age Group Seat Type Guidelines

Infants/toddlers

Toddlers/

preschoolers

School-aged

children

Older children

Infant seats

and rear-facing

convertible seats

Convertible seats

and forward-facing

seats with harnesses

Booster seats

Seat belts

three-in-one seats. When children reach the highest weight or length allowed

by the manufacturer of their infant-only seat, they should continue to face the

back of the vehicle in a convertible seat or three-in-one seat.

Source: American Academy of Pediatrics

All infants and toddlers should ride in

a rear-facing car safety seat until they

are 2 years of age or until they reach the

highest weight or height allowed by their

car safety seat’s manufacturer.

All children 2 years or older, or those

younger than 2 years who have

outgrown the rear-facing weight or

height limit for their car safety seat,

should use a forward-facing car safety

seat with a harness for as long as

possible, up to the highest weight or

height allowed by their car safety seat’s

manufacturer.

All children whose weight or height

is above the forward-facing limit for

their car safety seat should use a beltpositioning

booster seat until the vehicle

seat belt fits properly, typically when

they have reached 4 feet 9 inches in

height and are between 8 and 12 years

of age.

When children are old enough and

large enough to use the vehicle seat

belt alone, they should always use lap

and shoulder seat belts for optimal

protection.

All children younger than 13 years

should be restrained in the rear seats of

vehicles for optimal protection.

15

Blue & You Summer 2011


New education program helps

children with asthma breathe easier

16

For skateboarders and skiers, “catching air” is a

radical move; for children with asthma, it can be the difference

between life and death.

The new CatchAir Youth Asthma Program teaches

parents and children about asthma through fun information

that also is easy to understand. The program is free

and voluntary for Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield,

Health Advantage and eligible BlueAdvantage Administrators

of Arkansas members.

CatchAir targets four age-

specific groups — 0-3, 4-6,

7-11 and 12-17.

After enrollment, program

participants receive monthly age-appropriate information

through the mail. Parents read, use and share the

information with the younger children. Older program

participants can read and learn more on their own,

although there always is a parent component.

“Learning that your child has asthma may be alarming,”

said Robert Griffin, M.D., senior vice president and

chief medical officer for Arkansas Blue Cross. “Most

people want information and support. Our goal is to

make a positive difference in the lives of parents and

their children who have asthma, by helping them learn

more about asthma care. That way, they are better prepared

in an emergency, and can live a more peaceful,

healthy day-to-day life by managing the condition.”

Margaret Fizer, R.N., B.S.N., a health improvement

nurse specialist for Arkansas Blue Cross, developed the

CatchAir program. “We want our youngest members to

feel the freedom and power over asthma that a snowboarder

might feel when they ‘catch air,’” Fizer said.

As many as 71,000 children in Arkansas have asthma;

nationally one in 10 students

have asthma. “Asthma is a lifelong

disease that children don’t

outgrow,” she said. “Symptoms

may decrease as a child gets

older, but the asthma is still present.”

Educational materials range from the basics of

asthma to tracking asthma symptoms and medications,

emergency planning, healthy eating and fitness tips,

and everyday health. Telephone and Web resources are

provided as well as follow-ups with a registered nurse

case manager for those members who need case management

services.

For more information on the CatchAir Youth Asthma

Program, contact Arkansas Blue Cross’ Health

Education Division at 1-800-686-2609.

Blue & You Summer 2011


Individual/family policies can make changes in October

Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s

Open Enrollment Period (OEP) for individual

and family health plans will be held Oct. 1-31,

2011. During this OEP, members may:

1. Request policy changes, such as

• Adding or deleting dependents.

• Increasing or decreasing their

deductible.

• Adding or deleting maternity.

• Requesting removal of surcharges

or exclusions.

2. Apply for child-only policies for individuals age 18

or younger. During the rest of the year, individuals

age 18 or younger only can be considered for coverage

as a dependent.

Change forms for existing policies and applications

for new policies must be received (not just postmarked)

no later than Oct. 31, 2011. Forms are printable from

arkansasbluecross.com or you can call Customer

Service at 1-800-238-8379 to receive one.

Changes to existing policies will be effective

Jan. 1 or 15, 2012, depending on the

policy billing cycle. All

new child-only individual policies will be

effective Jan. 1, 2012.

Qualifying Life Events

Existing policyholders may make

changes throughout the year only if there

is a “qualifying life event” — such as a

marriage, divorce, death, birth of a child or loss of other

health insurance coverage. Child-only policy applications

may be submitted throughout the year only as a result

of involuntary loss of employer-sponsored health insurance

coverage, and must be submitted within 30 days

of the loss of coverage.

Watch for more information online and in the next

issue of Blue & You.

17

$1,000 health-improvement grants go fast

A

new grant program from the Blue & You Founda-

and awarded all 50 grants,” O’Sullivan said. “As this was

tion for a Healthier Arkansas recently provided $1,000

minigrants to 50 Arkansas organizations to implement

health-improvement projects in their communities. The

grant program was administered through the Arkansas

Community Foundation (ARCF).

“In addition to its annual, large-grants program, the

Blue & You Foundation wanted to offer

a new minigrants program that would

help more Arkansas communities

through a simpler application process

and a quicker funding decision,” said

Patrick O’Sullivan, executive director of the Blue & You

Foundation.

The new minigrants program proved to be extremely

popular. “In the first 28 days, we had 74 applications

considered a pilot, we are now evaluating the effectiveness

of the program and will likely offer a new round of

minigrants in early 2012.”

Any 501(c)(3) public charity, public school, government

agency or nonprofit hospital in Arkansas is eligible

to apply, but grants are not made to individuals. Funding

can be used to support an existing

health-improvement program or to support

a new start-up project.

The Blue & You Foundation is also

accepting applications through July 15

for its regular grants program (grants from $5,000

to $150,000). More information about these grant

opportunities can be found at blueandyoufoundationarkansas.org.

Blue & You Summer 2011


FDA decision removes

unapproved drugs from market

18

In March 2011, the U.S. Food

and Drug Administration (FDA) announced

that it will remove certain

unapproved prescription medicines

intended to relieve cough, cold and

allergy symptoms from the U.S.

market.

These products have

not been evaluated by

FDA to assure that they

are safe, effective and

of good quality. These

products may therefore

pose unnecessary risks

to consumers, especially

when there are

other products available

for the treatment of

cough, cold and allergy

symptoms, including

FDA-approved prescription drugs or

over-the-counter drugs that follow

appropriate FDA standards.

Some of the prescription medicines

being removed have been

Throughout

the past

century,

the laws

outlining the

requirements

for drug

approval

have

changed.

From the

marketed for many years. Throughout

the past century, the laws

outlining the requirements for drug

approval have changed. First, drug

regulation focused on adulteration

and misbranding but did not

require that new drug products be

approved prior to being marketed.

Then, laws on drug

regulation changed to

include drug safety

as a requirement for

approval. Currently, the

law requires that new

drugs be shown to be

safe, effective, of good

manufacturing quality

and not misbranded

prior to being approved

by the FDA. As a result

of these changes in

law, many of the products that

are the focus of this action have

been marketed without being

approved under the current legal

requirements.

The FDA says most manufacturers

affected by this action in March

2011 must stop making the product

within 90 days and stop shipping

them within 180 days. The FDA says

taking them off the market should

not create problems for consumers

because there are many other

products — both prescription and

over-the-counter — available for

the treatment of cough, cold and

allergy symptoms that meet FDA

standards.

If you are taking a prescription

medicine for cough, cold or allergy

symptoms and you want to know

if it is an approved drug, there are

a few resources available on the

FDA’s Web site, fda.gov. If you find

that you are taking one of the unapproved

prescription medications

that are affected by the FDA action,

please discuss alternatives with

your doctor or pharmacist.

Source: fda.gov, fda.gov/consumer

Pharmacist

by Trey Gardner, Pharm D.,

Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Blue & You Summer 2011


Alternatives

to treating

colic

All babies cry for a reason,

mostly when they are hungry, tired

or need a fresh diaper. But, if you’ve

ever been around a baby with colic,

you know it is altogether a different

situation.

Colic is an attack of crying due to

what appears to be abdominal pain

in early infancy. It is common — occurring

in approximately 20 percent

of all babies during their first few

months of life — and it is extremely

frustrating.

Colic normally appears just a few

weeks after birth and can last for

three or four months. Babies with

colic usually exhibit some or all of

the following symptoms:

• Crying intensely and furiously,

even when normal needs are

met.

• Fists may be clenched, abdominal

muscles may be tensed and

knees may be drawn up.

• Sleep may be irregular and interrupted

with episodes of crying.

• Feeding also may be interrupted

and irregular with episodes of

intense crying. However, the

amount the baby eats will not be

less.

There are few treatment options

for colic, but in a recent study,

several nutritional supplements and

other complementary and alternative

treatments were examined.

The use of fennel extract, herbal tea

(especially those with chamomile,

licorice, fennel and balm mint) and

sugar solutions were somewhat

effective in relieving the symptoms

of colicky babies but the results,

overall, were inconclusive. It was

determined that additional research

is necessary.

In the meantime, if you are dealing

with a colicky baby, you can

resort to a few “tried and true”

methods until he or she outgrows it.

These methods include:

• Swaddling a baby during a crying

episode.

• Sit the baby upright when feeding

to reduce the amount of air

swallowed.

• Use more frequent, but smaller,

feedings.

• If breastfeeding, avoid tea, coffee,

spicy foods and alcohol.

• Use a pacifier.

• Go for a walk with a stroller.

• Give the baby a warm bath or

gentle massage.

Perhaps the best tip is this one:

Have someone else help you with

the baby so you can have some private

time away. This may help calm

your anxieties and provide for a

more peaceful atmosphere overall.

19

Blue & You Summer 2011


20

The

Doctor’s

Corner

Have a “hawk eye” in the hospital

Customer Service. You also can

learn more about your doctor and

hospital by searching online.

• Arrange for someone to be at

the hospital with you. Make sure

they understand why you are

going to the hospital and are

aware of any other health concerns

you may have. This person

or persons will be your “hawk”

eyes and ears if you are sedated

or recovering.

• Make a list of all your medications,

or bring them with you.

Include any over-the-counter

medications, like aspirin; these

medications can be as important

to your doctor as your prescription

medications.

If you travel anywhere in Arkansas,

you can’t help but see the

hawks sitting silently above the

fields, watching calmly and listening

intently. And if you’ve ever gotten

too close to a hawk’s nest, you

know how fast they can move and

how loud they can be in order to

protect their young. The next time

you or a loved one has to enter the

hospital, think back on those hawks;

that same quiet attention to detail

and fast action can make you a powerful

patient advocate and a strong

member of the care team.

Before Going to the Hospital

Some hospitalizations occur

suddenly while others are planned

well in advance. If the situation

allows you to plan ahead, consider

the following:

• If you smoke, try to quit at least

two weeks before the hospitalization.

If you can’t quit, let the

hospital staff know. They may

be able to provide you with

support to help with withdrawal

symptoms.

• Do some research. Make sure

your doctor is in our network by

going to our Web site or calling

At the Hospital

As a patient, or as the advocate

for your loved one, you are part of

the care team. If you see something

that doesn’t look right, or you hear

information that may not be correct,

ask questions. If you still are not

satisfied, don’t hesitate to alert the

doctor, a nurse or a hospital administrator.

By being polite and quiet

when things are going well, you

will be taken seriously when you do

speak out regarding an issue.

As a Patient:

• Be sure your doctor is aware

of any allergies to medications,

food, latex or tape adhesive.

• Be honest if you have an addiction

to alcohol or drugs. Your doc-

Blue & You Summer 2011


tor may be able to help you with

withdrawal, and not letting the

doctor or hospital know could

create a serious health situation

for you.

• Ask if the hospital has adopted

a surgical checklist. If not, ask

what your surgeon and anesthesiologist

will do to be sure the

requirements are met.

• Ask if you need antibiotics prior

to the operation. Also, if you typically

require antibiotics before

dental work, tell your doctor.

• Ask for the surgical site to be

marked before you are sedated

so you know it is the correct location.

Make sure your advocate

knows the location as well.

• Do not shave the surgical site

yourself. The hospital staff should

use clippers, not razor blades, to

prepare the site.

As a Patient Advocate:

• Be sure you wash your hands

frequently and be sure others

(family, nurses, doctors) wash

theirs every time they come in

the room. If someone doesn’t,

say something. Be sure the

doctors and nurses wear gloves

when doing wound care, dressing

changes, IV site changes etc.

• Politely tell any sick visitors that

they should wait to visit when

they — and the patient — are

better.

• Keep a record of all activities and

conversations and include times

and names of all people involved.

What medicine was given? Was

there a change? Which doctor

rounded? What tests or procedures

were done? Did the results

get back to the doctor?

• Ask what medications are being

given. If something is new, ask

what it does and find out if there

could be side effects.

It is important

for the patient

and advocate

to listen, ask

questions and take

notes.

• If the stay in the hospital is

lengthy, be sure the staff keeps

your loved one from developing

bedsores by frequently turning

him or her.

• Ask whether a medicine is

needed to prevent blood clots.

• Report any broken or malfunctioning

equipment, including

call lights, wheelchairs, bedside

tables, hand-sanitizer dispensers

or bathroom handrails. If it is not

working, it may cause problems.

• Talk to each nurse at shift change

about fall prevention. Falls are

frequent in hospitals because

of sickness, age, incontinence,

medication effects and being in

a strange environment. Combine

your common sense and knowledge

of your loved one with the

by Vic Snyder, M.D.,

Corporate Medical Director

for External Affairs

nurse’s professional experience.

What changes have occurred in

your loved one that may increase

the risk of falling?

° Is the room cluttered or

too dark?

° Are wheels locked on

wheelchairs and other

equipment?

° Are the toilet seat and

the bed at the appropriate

height?

° Would a regular bathroom

schedule be safer than

waiting for an urgent call of

nature?

° Is the call-light working and

reachable?

° As your loved one improves,

is the activity level expanded

so that muscle strength

and conditioning improves?

• If there is a central venous line,

watch for signs of infection. Pay

strict attention to hand washing

and gloves. Talk to the doctor

daily regarding how long the

central line needs to stay in.

Hospital, continued on Page 27

21

Blue & You Summer 2011


22

BlueCares team rallies to se

In the aftermath of a tornado

that devastated their community on

Arkansas Blue Cross

employees serve lunch

to storm victims and

volunteers in Vilonia.

April 25, 2011, the members of Vilonia

United Methodist Church looked

for ways to help their neighbors.

The members of their community

were so consumed with digging out

of the rubble left in the wake of the

storm, they had little time to even

consider from where their next

meal was coming.

That’s when the members of the

church took action. According to

their pastor, Belinda Price, Vilonia

United Methodist Church coordinated

with various restaurants to

provide meals. As a result, they

served approximately 400 people

in a single day. But so much more

needed to be done.

“We were having a meeting at

our church discussing how to do

this again because the need was so

great,” said Price.

They began calling other restaurants

for help, one of which was

Whole Hog Café in Little Rock.

“We asked if they could help out

and they said they were already

fixing enough barbecue to feed

1,000 people in Vilonia the following

Saturday,” said Price.

Which raised some questions…

Where would they distribute

the food?

Did they need a place?

Blue & You Summer 2011


ve community after storms

Who was organizing this effort in the first place?

“We called back and asked,” said Price.

That’s when they found out the effort was being

coordinated by Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield.

The plan was to provide free barbecue lunches to storm

clean up crews and displaced families in Vilonia.

“So we called Arkansas Blue Cross and asked them

if they needed a place to serve the food and they

said, ‘yes.’”

So, 20 volunteers from Arkansas Blue Cross set up

shop at Vilonia United Methodist Church and started

feeding people. It was a mission that hit

very close to home for many of them.

“I have become accustomed to seeing

this type of thing on the news, but to witness it first

hand was humbling,” said Betsy Petty, a supervisor for

BlueCard Host Adjustments and one of the Arkansas

Blue Cross volunteers. “I live within 10 miles of Vilonia.

That night the storm could have easily turned and gone

through my neighborhood — so a lot of emotions went

through me. I’m thankful that I was spared, but I’m also

hurt by the suffering that Vilonia was going through.”

The volunteers fed an estimated 800 to 900 people.

“It was astounding,” said Price. “So many people

were served, both at the church and in the

neighborhoods.”

The damage had blocked so many roads that many

of the clean-up crews could not get to the church. But,

according to Price, crews would send one person to

get through the debris to the church. That person would

then take back a lot of takeout orders.

Elaine Hickman, a lead system analyst/programmer

for Pinnacle Business Solutions, Inc., also was one of

the volunteers.

“I cried all the way to the church,” she said. “After

seeing the disaster, it really brings into focus that this

could have been any one of us, and we should be willing

to do whatever we can to assist those in need. The

need is still so great and this clean up will take a

long time.”

Serving meals was not the only assistance offered by

Arkansas Blue Cross. The company also waived pharmacy

costs for its members who were victims of

the storm.

“Our hearts go out to our fellow Arkansans who lost

so much in these storms,” said Mark White, president

and chief executive officer of Arkansas Blue Cross. “We

know there is a lot to go through following

a natural disaster, and we want our

members to stay healthy as they rebuild.

We want to ease their financial burden by replacing

their needed medications.”

Helping out in times of need is nothing new for

Arkansas Blue Cross. In fact, the company has a rich

history of community involvement. A little more than a

week before storms ravaged Arkansas, employees of

Arkansas Blue Cross turned out en masse to participate

in the 2011 Start! Heart Walk and raised more than

$10,000 for the American Heart Association.

Mike Brown, executive vice president and chief

operating officer for Arkansas Blue Cross, served as the

2011 corporate walk chair for the Little Rock chapter of

the American Heart Association.

This kind of dedication would come as no surprise

to Donna Lewis, a member of Vilonia United Methodist

Church, after seeing employees in action at her church.

“Arkansas Blue Cross employees took care of everything,”

she said. “And when it was over, they even

helped us take everything down and then helped us set

up for our Sunday services. I said, ‘You don’t have to do

that,’ and they said, ‘no, no, we’re here to help you.’”

23

Blue & You Summer 2011


BLUE News

24

Grant funds training for hospital board members

competence needed to make better, more educated de-

A hospital’s quality, safety and fiscal responsibility cisions and to govern more effectively on behalf of the

is determined not only by its doctors but by its board patients and communities they serve. Arkansas Blue

members. For this reason, Arkansas Blue Cross and Cross has provided $50,000 to this mission.

Blue Shield is providing funding to the Arkansas Hospital

Association (AHA) and the Arkansas Association of to health care and emergency care in communities;

Hospitals are not only vital in providing easy access

Hospital Trustees (AAHT) to support their goal of certifying

at least 80 percent of all hospital board members in the AHA, hospitals are the second largest private sec-

they have an important economic impact. According to

Arkansas in the Best on Board educational program. tor source of jobs in the nation. Every dollar spent by

Best on Board specializes in helping hospital trustees a hospital supports more than two dollars of additional

and other health care leaders gain the confidence and business activity in a community.

Gray Dillard named chief financial officer

Gray Dillard, CPA, has

been named chief financial

officer (CFO) and treasurer

for Arkansas Blue Cross

and Blue Shield.

As CFO, Dillard will be

responsible for financial

activities for Arkansas Blue

Cross, HMO Partners, Inc.

and USAble Corporation, which includes accounting,

financial operations, administrative cost management,

enterprise reporting and capital management. He will

serve as treasurer of Arkansas Blue Cross and HMO

Partners, and as secretary/treasurer of USAble Corporation.

Dillard also will continue his responsibilities as vice

president of Financial Services.

Dillard joined Arkansas Blue Cross in March 1994

as senior accountant for Health Advantage and was

promoted to accounting manager of Financial Services

and controller of HMO Partners in 2000. He served as

regional executive in the Hot Springs office from 2005

to 2008. He was promoted to vice president of Financial

Services in 2009.

Dillard received his bachelor’s degree from Harding

University in Searcy. Dillard works closely with the

Maumelle Sports Association and coaches youth baseball,

basketball and softball. He is an active member of

Levy Church of Christ. Dillard was a recent member of

the Hot Springs Fifty for the Future and completed the

Leadership Hot Springs Program where he served as

treasurer.

AskBlue about reform

AskBlue is a new feature available on our Web sites

that helps both individuals and businesses understand

more about health insurance reform — it’s a personal

guide to understanding the basics and includes

changes happening now and in the future.

AskBlue, created by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Association, is available on the Arkansas Blue Cross

and Blue Shield, Health Advantage and BlueAdvantage

Administrators of Arkansas Web sites.

Blue & You Summer 2011


Vic Snyder, M.D., joins medical staff

Arkansas Blue Cross wins awards

Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s Enterprise Information

Development Division recently won two Blue

Health Intelligence (BHI) Best of Blue Awards at the

Blue National Summit held in Chicago. The first award

was for plan-to-plan collaboration and the second was

for return on investment.

BHI combines the health care information of more

than 54 million Blue Cross and Blue Shield members

nationwide in a database that is fully protected under

the safeguards established by the Health Insurance

Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

Vic Snyder, M.D., former

U.S. representative for Arkansas’

2nd Congressional

District, has been named

the corporate medical

director for external affairs

for Arkansas Blue Cross

and Blue Shield. In his new

position, Snyder will participate

in the development of medical policy, member

benefits and physician and hospital networks.

Snyder served in Vietnam as part of the U.S. 1st

Marine Division during the Vietnam War. He earned his

For the first award, Arkansas Blue Cross worked with

a health care data analytics expert, to collect information

from the BHI data warehouse and identify trends

that increase cost and health care usage for one of the

company’s largest nationwide accounts. As a result,

Arkansas Blue Cross can provide statistical information

to support the national account’s business decisions.

bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Willamette University

in Salem, Ore., and his doctorate in medicine from

the University of Oregon Health Sciences Center (now

Oregon Health and Science University) in Portland, Ore.

Dr. Snyder completed his residency at the University of

Arkansas for Medical Sciences. He served as a family

practice physician in Little Rock for 15 years. He attended

the University of Arkansas at Little Rock School

of Law to obtain his law degree while still maintaining

his medical practice. He served in the Arkansas State

Legislature from 1991 until 1996. Snyder served as a

congressman from 1997 to 2011.

To earn the award for return on investment, the

Enterprise Information Development Division improved

the timeliness in which data is delivered to Arkansas

Blue Cross by implementing service level agreements

that focus on quality, timeliness, change control and

issue resolution. As a result, Arkansas Blue Cross’ data

warehouse has seen a dramatic improvement in its

ability to secure the data needed for various business

purposes.

James Gaston,

manager of

Enterprise

Information

Development, is

presented with

the BHI Best

of Blue award

for plan-to-plan

collaboration.

25

Blue & You Summer 2011


Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Financial Information Privacy Notice

At Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue

Shield and its affiliates (including

HMO Partners, Inc. d/b/a Health

Advantage), we understand how

important it is to keep your private

purchase and use of our

products.

• Information related to the fact

that you have been or currently

are a member.

information. Improper access and

use of confidential information by an

employee can result in disciplinary

action up to and including termination

of employment.

26

information just that — private.

Because of the nature of our

business, we must collect some

personal information from our

members, but we also are committed

to maintaining, securing and

protecting that information.

Customer Information

Arkansas Blue Cross and its

Sharing of Information

Arkansas Blue Cross and its

affiliates do not disclose, and do not

wish to reserve the right to disclose,

non-public personal information about

you to one another or to other parties

except as permitted or required by

law. Examples of instances in which

Arkansas Blue Cross and its affiliates

Disclosure of Privacy Notice

Arkansas Blue Cross and its

affiliates recognize and respect the

privacy concerns of potential, current

and former customers. Arkansas Blue

Cross and its affiliates are committed

to safeguarding this information. As

required by state regulation, we must

notify our members about how we

affiliates only compile information

will provide information to one

handle non-public financial information

necessary for us to provide the

another or other third parties are:

of our members. If you would like

services that you, our member,

request from us and to administer

your business. We collect non-public

personal financial information (defined

as any information that can be tied

back to a specific person and is

gathered by any source that is

not publicly available) about our

members from:

• Applications for insurance coverage.

The application includes

information such as name, address,

personal identifiers such

as Social Security number, and

medical information that you

authorize us to collect.

• Payment history and related

financial transactions from the

• To service or process products

that you have requested.

• To provide information as permitted

and required by law to

accrediting agencies.

• To provide information to comply

with federal, state or local

laws in an administrative or

judicial process.

How We Protect Your

Information

Arkansas Blue Cross and its

affiliates use various security

mechanisms to protect your personal

data including electronic and physical

measures as well as company

policies that limit employee access

to non-public personal financial

to review the Financial Information

Privacy Notices for all Arkansas Blue

Cross members, you can visit our Web

site at arkansasbluecross.com or call

the appropriate Arkansas Blue Cross

affiliate company to receive the Privacy

Notice. Our customer service areas

are open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.,

Central time, Monday through Friday.

To receive a copy of the Privacy

Notice, members should call:

Arkansas Blue Cross —

1-800-238-8379.

Health Advantage — 1-800-843-1329.

Self-funded group members should

call Customer Service using the tollfree

telephone number on their

ID card.

Blue & You Summer 2011


Hospital, continued from Page 21

• Watch any wound

dressings; if they

come off or need

to be changed, tell

someone.

• Be sure urine

catheter bags are

below your loved one’s center of gravity. Discuss

with the doctor and nurses what can be done to

prevent infections from the urinary catheter and

make sure it happens.

• If your loved one is on a ventilator, ask about bed

elevation and how often his or her mouth should

be cleaned.

• Watch your loved one’s intake at meals. If food

consistently is uneaten, tell the doctor.

Before Leaving the Hospital

Once again, it is important for the patient and

advocate to listen, ask questions and take notes. Too

often, patients do not follow their doctors’ discharge

instructions and end up being re-admitted to the

hospital. You may be able to avoid re-admittance by

asking the following:

• Is special care needed for any catheters, surgical

incision sites or IV sites?

• What medications will be taken? Will any previous

medications be discontinued?

• When is the follow-up appointment?

• Will dressings need to be changed at home?

• Are home health services needed?

Being part of the care team when someone needs

medical attention is a huge responsibility, but by being

like a hawk — quietly watching and listening intently

and speaking up when you have a concern —

you can be sure you or your loved one gets the best

care possible. To see more information on patient

advocacy, go to our Web sites listed to the right.

We love to hear from you!

May we help? For customer service, please call:

Little Rock

Number (501)

Toll-free

Number

Medi-Pak ® members 378-3062 1-800-338-2312

Medi-Pak Advantage members 1-877-233-7022

Medi-Pak Rx members 1-866-390-3369

Arkansas Blue Cross members 378-2010 1-800-238-8379

Pharmacy questions 1-800-863-5561

Specialty Rx Pharmacy questions 1-866-295-2779

Health Advantage members 378-2363 1-800-843-1329

Pharmacy questions 1-800-863-5567

BlueAdvantage members 378-3600 1-888-872-2531

Pharmacy questions 1-888-293-3748

State and Public School members 378-2364 1-800-482-8416

Federal Employee members 378-2531 1-800-482-6655

Looking for health or dental insurance? We can help!

For individuals, families

and those age 65 or older 378-2937 1-800-392-2583

For employer groups 378-3070 1-800-421-1112

(Arkansas Blue Cross Group Services, which includes

Health Advantage and BlueAdvantage Administrators

of Arkansas)

Prefer to speak with someone close to home? Call or visit one

of our regional office locations:

Pine Bluff/Southeast Region 1-800-236-0369

1800 West 73rd St.

Jonesboro/Northeast Region 1-800-299-4124

707 East Matthews Ave.

Hot Springs/South Central Region 1-800-588-5733

100 Greenwood Ave., Suite C

Texarkana/Southwest Region 1-800-470-9621

1710 Arkansas Boulevard

Fayetteville/Northwest Region 1-800-817-7726

516 East Milsap Rd., Suite 103

Fort Smith/West Central Region 1-866-254-9117

3501 Old Greenwood Rd., Suite 5

Little Rock/Central Region 1-800-421-1112

320 West Capitol Ave., Suite 900

Visit our Web sites for more information:

arkansasbluecross.com

healthadvantage-hmo.com

blueadvantagearkansas.com

blueandyoufoundationarkansas.org

27

Blue & You Summer 2011


28

Curves discounts

The Curves Greater Arkansas Area Cooperative

has lowered its joining fee from $59 to $39 for

new members. The discount only applies to Curves

at the locations below. In addition to the regular

Curves Circuit, all locations offer Zumba ® Fitness

and the SilverSneakers ® Fitness Program.

The discounts are available in: Benton, Bentonville,

Bryant, Conway, Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Jacksonville,

the Chenonceau Boulevard, Otter Creek

and Shackleford locations in Little Rock, Maumelle,

Sherwood and Springdale.

At Arkansas Blue Cross

and Blue Shield, we are

always looking for new

ways to be "Good for You."

Here are some of our

latest accomplishments.

Like us on Facebook! Follow us

on Twitter!

Our annual Blue & You Fitness

Challenge contest is finished …

but our Facebook page and Twitter

messages go on. If you want quick health tips, a

way to connect with others who share your devotion

to exercise, or are wondering what “walk” or

fun, sweat-inducing event may be occurring in your

hometown … check us out on Facebook

and Twitter.

Use this QR code to go directly

to your new favorite exercise tips

site. Don’t have a QR code reader

on your smartphone? Just download

a free QR code reader from

your favorite app store. It’s easy!

Blue & You Summer 2011

MPI_#798

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