OAKLAND, Calif. (March 19, 2021) – Blue Shield of California, as the state of California’s third-party administrator, today announced the state’s enhanced COVID-19 vaccine provider network continues to expand, with the number of providers enrolled by the network nearly doubling since last week.
More providers are expected to enroll in the state’s network in the coming weeks, enabling the network to meet or exceed California’s goal of having the capacity to deliver 4 million doses a week by the end of April.
The currently enrolled providers represent a wide range of facilities across California that together reach 99 percent of the state’s 16-years and older population based on the state’s guidance of people having vaccine provider access within 10 miles for urban areas and 30 miles for rural areas. The network also has a deep presence in most vulnerable communities with the network reaching 99 percent of the population in areas California has identified as high priorities for vaccine availability to meet equity goals (lowest quartile Healthy Places Index).
“This is a collective effort by providers along with local and state health officials to save lives by making vaccines available to all Californians, especially those living in communities hardest hit by this pandemic,” said Paul Markovich, president and CEO, Blue Shield of California. “Together, we are building a provider network that can quickly get vaccines to every corner of our state and the way to do that is to build capacity that’s only limited by the number of doses we receive from the federal government.”
The state’s enhanced network includes Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and community health clinics, local provider systems, pharmacies, and all multi-county entities. The network currently has the capacity to deliver over 3 million doses per week. Combined with the mega sites operated by the federal government, California is expected to greatly exceed its goal of creating statewide capacity to be able to administer 4 million vaccinations a week.
The third-party administrator, under the direction of the state, continues to work closely with counties and their health officials including equity plans that engage community-based organizations to help ensure vaccines reach all parts of their communities.
The latest list of participating vaccine providers can be found at this link.
It is important to note that during the March transition period, the providers already administering the vaccine will continue to receive doses to ensure vaccines are available to as many Californians as possible.
Blue Shield continues to work expeditiously to have as many eligible providers participate in the enhanced network including FQHCs, community clinics, multi-county entities, hospital systems, medical groups, pharmacies and others.
Blue Shield is a nonprofit health plan that’s answering the call by the state to support its vaccine distribution efforts to help save lives. The health plan is working closely with each county, their public health leaders, and state officials to build a vaccine network to help meet the state’s goal to ensure all Californians have access to the vaccines equitably, efficiently and as quickly as possible.
The health plan is taking on this effort at cost without making a profit from the state. Blue Shield is not charging the state for its staff time devoted to this effort. It will only bill the state actual expenses to support the network up to the limit of the contract.
About Blue Shield of California
Blue Shield of California strives to create a healthcare system worthy of its family and friends that is sustainably affordable. Blue Shield of California is a tax paying, nonprofit, independent member of the Blue Shield Association with over 4.5 million members, over 7,500 employees and more than $21 billion in annual revenue. Founded in 1939 in San Francisco and now headquartered in Oakland, Blue Shield of California and its affiliates provide health, dental, vision, Medicaid and Medicare healthcare service plans in California. The company has contributed more than $150 million to Blue Shield of California Foundation in the last four years to have an impact on California communities.
For more news about Blue Shield of California, please visit news.blueshieldca.com.