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S.C. BlueChoice Medicaid Teams With Community Groups to Serve South Carolina’s Youngest Residents

August 10, 2009

COLUMBIA, S.C., Aug. 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — BlueChoice(R) HealthPlan of South Carolina’s Medicaid business line is launching “Diaper Change,” a campaign to serve South Carolina’s low-income families through disposable diaper donations.

“Babies in low-income households often spend an entire day in a single diaper. Inadequate diaper changing increases the risk of skin diseases and urinary tract infections and may be linked to an increased rate of hepatitis,” said BlueChoice HealthPlan President Mary Mazzola Spivey. “Our BlueChoice HealthPlan Medicaid unit plans to make this a major campaign because this is a serious community need.”

BlueChoice HealthPlan Medicaid’s goal is to collect 250,000 diapers or monetary donations. These will be given to local food banks for distribution.

Joining BlueChoice HealthPlan Medicaid in this effort are Harvest Hope Food Bank, The Lowcountry Food Bank, churches, businesses and numerous local organizations that are hosting community events at which disposable diapers will be collected over the next several months.

At monthly costs of more than $100 per bottom, keeping a baby in dry, clean diapers is costly. For the state’s poor, it can be downright impossible. Infrequent diaper changing increases the risk of health problems and can put an infant that is crying due to the discomfort of a soiled diaper at greater risk for abuse. Lower-cost cloth diapers are not an option for children in day care, and low-income parents cannot take advantage of free or subsidized child care if they cannot afford to provide disposable diapers for their child.

Collection events that have already taken place have netted 3,300 diapers and $550 in donations. Remaining collection events scheduled at this point are the following:

    11 Aug    Healthy Connections: Center for Community     Greenville
               Services
    11 Aug    Zion Hill Prevention Save the Kids Back to    Fairfield
               School Eve                                    County
    15 Aug    Children's Free Health Screening              Columbia
    21 Aug    Harvest Hope: Movies in the Park              Columbia
    22 Aug    York SummerFest                               York
    23 Aug    York SummerFest                               York
    24 Aug    York SummerFest                               York
    25 Aug    York SummerFest                               York
    3 Sept    Upper South Carolina State Fair               Greenville
    12 Sept   Southern Harvest Music Festival               Batesburg-
                                                             Leesville
    18 Sept   Lexington Fun Fest                            Lexington
    19 Sept   Lexington Fun Fest                            Lexington
    20 Sept   Thanksgiving in September                     Columbia

Collections events will continue to be scheduled throughout the state for several months.

In addition, BlueChoice HealthPlan is encouraging churches, civic groups and businesses to hold their own diaper drives and is partnering with retail stores to place in-store collection boxes. Groups interested in participating can call 803-382-5036 or e-mail DiaperChange@bluechoicesc.com.

Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., BlueChoice HealthPlan of South Carolina (www.BlueChoiceSC.com) is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. BlueChoice HealthPlan has an A+ rating from A.M. Best and an Excellent accreditation status, the highest level awarded, from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA).

BlueChoice HealthPlan offers four categories of group health plans, as well as individual plans for children and young adults, and a South Carolina Medicaid product. Medicaid members enjoy their normal Medicaid coverage, plus they can visit the doctor’s office as often as needed with no copayments, can save money with discounts on health programs such as weight management, can receive discounts on fitness center memberships, and can buy allergy products, vitamins and more at discount savings. Members with some chronic diseases get extra help through BlueChoice HealthPlan’s Healthy Habits program. To inquire about membership, call 800-574-8864.

SOURCE BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina


Source: newswire



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