New BCBSNM Initiative Aims to Significantly Improve the Health of New Mexico's Children
“Healthy Kids, Healthy Families” Seeks Local/National Nonprofit Partners
ALBUQUERQUE, NM (May 31, 2011) – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico (BCBSNM) is stepping up its effort to improve the health of kids in New Mexico communities with the launch of a major initiative called “Healthy Kids, Healthy Families,” which aims to improve the health of a million children corporation-wide. The three-year effort will fund programs that encourage nutrition education, promote physical activity, prevent and manage disease, and support safe environments for children.
"As a company committed to health and wellness, we must continue to be part of innovative solutions to the health challenges we face,” said Dr. Matt Fontana, vice-president and chief medical officer of BCBSNM. “Nearly 75 percent of health care dollars are spent on preventable chronic diseases, and obesity is the leading contributor. Healthy Kids, Healthy Families will be a major part of Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s efforts over the next several years to promote healthy habits among young people and help build a new generation of wellness for New Mexico."
Through Healthy Kids, Healthy Families, BCBSNM will focus resources and time on strategic alliances with nonprofit organizations that best match its commitment to fostering greater community health improvements. Several organizations, such as New Mexico Alliance for School-Based Health Care, are already part of the strategic initiative.
"BCBSNM's efforts have the potential to improve health outcomes for school-based health care patients, and because healthy students are better learners, this partnership will help reduce health barriers to learning, improve student educational outcomes, and, ultimately, benefit families and communities," said Patsy Nelson, BSN, MA, and board member of the New Mexico Alliance for School-Based Health Care.
The Healthy Kids, Healthy Families initiative plans to provide more than 150,000 immunizations, offer nutrition education to the schools and kitchen tables of 125,000 students, and promote physical activity to an additional 200,000 children in New Mexico, Illinois, Oklahoma, and Texas.
"Motivating children to engage in healthy habits such as nutrition and exercise at an early age will help foster healthier adults," added Dr. Fontana. “We’re committed to ensuring that our children’s health is a local and national priority."
About Healthy Kids, Healthy Families
"Healthy Kids, Healthy Families" is a three-year initiative designed to encourage health education, promote physical activity, prevent and manage disease, and support safe environments for children. The program works through investments and partnerships with nonprofit organizations that offer sustainable, measurable programs to reach children directly, through schools and other third parties. The program is supported by Health Care Service Corporation and its Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans in New Mexico, Illinois, Oklahoma, and Texas. For more information or to seek partnership and funding opportunities, please visit Healthy Kids Healthy Families.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield Of New Mexico
With more than 315,000 members and serving another 100,000 New Mexicans through the nationwide BlueCard® Program, BCBSNM, a Division of Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company, is the largest customer-owned health insurer in New Mexico. Since 1940, BCBSNM has been committed to promoting the health and wellness of its members and communities through accessible, cost-effective, quality health care. BCBSNM is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
- Becky Kenny: (505) 816-2012 or 505-999-8806, email@example.com