URAC, a national accreditation and education leader, recognized WellPoint Chief Medical Officer Sam Nussbaum with its Health Care Stars! Award granted to those who demonstrate a commitment to saving and improving people’s lives and preventing adverse health outcomes. “Individuals who choose to work in health care have a rare dedication to improving the lives of others,” said Kylanne Green, URAC president and CEO. “We are honored to showcase a select few who have constantly risen above their daily duties. These exceptional people do great work to protect and empower health care consumers worldwide.” An innovator of provider payment strategy, Nussbaum, executive vice president of WellPoint’s Clinical Health Policy, advocates a national policy that shifts from rewarding volume to rewarding value. He is an internal champion of WellPoint’s commitment to transforming the private payment system for hospitals and physicians. His advocacy led WellPoint to become the first major health benefits company to announce in May 2011 that its affiliated health plans will only consider rate increases for hospitals willing to tie payments to improved safety, quality, patient care and value. Nussbaum has led the building of Patient Centered Medical Homes across the nation, and he was a driving force behind Patient Safety First, a California health initiative partnership that has saved lives, improved care quality and reduced costs in California’s hospitals. The partnership contributed to saving more than 950 lives between 2010 and 2012. URAC’s 2013 Health Care Stars! Awards were open to anyone who works for the more than 600 organizations that have earned or are in the process of earning URAC accreditation. The awards were judged by a panel of health care industry experts including URAC advisory committee members, board members and key leaders from across the industry. The panel reviewed all of the nominations, looking for specific accomplishments and clear results that the nominee had made a positive impact on the health of the consumers they serve.
About WellPoint Inc.At WellPoint, we believe there is an important connection between our members' health and well-being—and the value we bring our customers and shareholders. So each day we work to improve the health of our members and their communities. And, we can make a real difference since we have nearly 36 million people in our affiliated health plans, and nearly 68 million people served through our subsidiaries. As an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, WellPoint serves members as the Blue Cross licensee for California; and as the Blue Cross and Blue Shield licensee for Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri (excluding 30 counties in the Kansas City area), Nevada, New Hampshire, New York (as the Blue Cross Blue Shield licensee in 10 New York City metropolitan and surrounding counties and as the Blue Cross or Blue Cross Blue Shield licensee in selected upstate counties only), Ohio, Virginia (excluding the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C.), and Wisconsin. In a majority of these service areas, WellPoint's plans do business as Anthem Blue Cross, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia and Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, or Empire Blue Cross (in the New York service areas). We also serve customers in several additional states through our Amerigroup subsidiary and in certain markets through our CareMore subsidiary. Our 1-800 CONTACTS, Inc. subsidiary offers customers online sales of contact lenses, eyeglasses and other ocular products. Additional information about WellPoint is available at www.wellpoint.com.