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Blue Shield of California Fulfilling Terms of Acquisition Agreement for Care1st Health Plan

Recent Actions Include $35 Million Contribution to its Foundation

SAN FRANCISCO AND MONTEREY PARK, CA (January 13, 2016) --- Since receiving approval from the state Department of Managed Health Care for the acquisition of Care1st Health Plan in October 2015, Blue Shield of California has made substantial progress in implementing the Undertakings agreement.

The Blue Shield of California Board of Directors approved a contribution of $35 million to the Blue Shield of California Foundation. This amount far exceeds the $14 million minimum annual requirement contained in the Undertakings agreement and is consistent with the amount Blue Shield has contributed in recent years.

The Board of Directors also approved a $2 million grant to the Legal Aid Society of San Diego as the lead agency and coordinator of all funding activities of the Health Consumer Alliance, which is comprised of 11 California nonprofit organizations that provide locally based consumer assistance programs. This represents the first installment of Blue Shield’s five-year, $10 million commitment to enhance consumer assistance and education efforts in the state.

Both the Foundation grant and the consumer assistance grant were paid in December.

Consistent with Blue Shield’s commitment prior to the acquisition, Care1st Health Plan converted into a nonprofit mutual benefit corporation. Care1st has also obtained a Blue Plan license from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

Blue Shield of California Foundation is one of the largest private contributors to California’s community clinics and the largest private funder of domestic violence programs in California. In the past decade, the Foundation has given more than $350 million to nonprofit organizations serving Californians.

Blue Shield continues to make progress on its remaining commitments – including the development of a statewide centralized provider directory database – and will provide an update on these items in the coming months.

Care1st is a provider-founded managed care company based in Los Angeles County. As a result of the transaction, Blue Shield and its affiliates are serving Medi-Cal and Medicaid beneficiaries for the first time. Care1st primarily serves residents in Southern California and has a smaller presence in Arizona and Texas. Medi-Cal is the state of California’s version of the federal Medicaid program for low-income enrollees.

Contact: Sean Barry, 415-229-5359,

About Blue Shield of California

Blue Shield of California, an independent member of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, is a not-for-profit health plan with 4 million members, 6,800 employees and more than $13 billion in annual revenue. Founded in 1939 and headquartered in San Francisco, Blue Shield of California and its affiliates provide health, dental, vision, Medicaid and Medicare health care service plans in California. The company’s mission is to ensure all Californians have access to high-quality care at an affordable price. Blue Shield has contributed more than $325 million over the past ten years to the Blue Shield of California Foundation. Contact your local agent or broker about Blue Shield of California products and services, or visit

 About Care1st Health Plan

A plan dedicated to members first, Care1st Health Plan was founded in 1994 by a group comprised of providers, organized medical groups, and hospitals with the heart of the community at the forefront of their minds. This dynamic team came together to create a pro-patient healthcare delivery system that has grown to over 500,000 members today. Care1st offers Medicaid, Medicare Advantage HMO, and Dual Eligible Special needs plans. The same healthcare professionals continue to lead Care1st as an expanding consumer-based organization, striving to deliver the right care, more choices, competitive health benefits and provider-focused service. For more information, please visit our website at