I am proud to share with you today the stories of how our company responded to the extraordinary challenges of 2020, and the strong values and strategy that are carrying us into 2021.
When COVID-19 reached the U.S., we were there, for our members, for our customers, for our clinical partners, for our community. And when our country reckoned with a legacy of systemic racism, we stood with our neighbors, and stood up for change. In 2021, we will continue this vital work.
As the stories in this year’s annual report illustrate, at Blue Cross, we build our business around our members’ needs. We equip them to navigate a complex, expensive and fragmented health care system. We provide access to high-quality, affordable care, advanced online tools and personal service that is quick, responsive and empathetic.
In 2020, we transformed our business in response to urgent new needs, for example, eliminating out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 testing, treatment and vaccination. We vastly expanded access to telehealth, provided self-guided digital tools for mental health care, and worked with child psychiatrists and primary care physicians to make mental health treatment more accessible to broader populations. We offered webinars to thousands of our members on depression and anxiety, and the stress caused by social injustice.
We are keenly aware that, as a community and a country, we are facing pandemics of both coronavirus and racism. Those of us in health care have a responsibility to address both. And just as we acted swiftly to respond to COVID-19, we have broadened our commitment to diversity and inclusion by focusing on racial equity in health.
This year, we are using our advanced data and analytics capabilities, in collaboration with our clinician partners, to identify inequities in care. We intend to be a leader in creating a more equitable health care system that does a better job of meeting everyone’s needs.
While we focus on COVID-19 and racial inequity, we cannot lose sight of the urgent need for affordable health care.
Our innovative products, services and payment models improve health outcomes, reduce waste and improve the overall value of our members’ health care. This year, we will be working closely with physicians and hospitals in our network to create a more sustainable system so quality care is affordable for individuals, families and employers.
Thank you for your support, and special thanks to the frontline workers whose courage was the one constant in an otherwise uncertain and extraordinary year.
President & CEO