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Beyond the mission: how we impact Tennessee’s economy

A positive impact can take many forms. For our more than 6,000 employees, our positive influence starts with offering affordable access to quality health care. It can also be seen when we share useful information with our members, help them manage chronic conditions, or support charitable causes that benefit their families and neighbors.

But beyond our daily efforts to deliver on our mission of peace of mind through better health, our company also makes a positive contribution to the state’s economy.

According to the Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Tennessee, BlueCross is annually responsible for $1.6 billion in income, 18,043 jobs and $367.9 million in tax revenue across the Volunteer state. 

(Download the full report.)

Being right here in Tennessee, a distinction from our competitors, is what delivers that economic benefit. The jobs, household income and tax revenue generated by BlueCross wouldn’t exist in Tennessee if the company were headquartered elsewhere.

Generating income for Tennessee businesses and families

BlueCross increases economic activity through what we pay employees (including both salaries and benefits). Our total payroll spending in 2017 was $569.2 million, which represents about 4 cents from each premium dollar.

We further generate economic activity by what we spend on goods and services such as software and office supplies. Last year, that figure topped $312.2 million.

Economists at the University of Tennessee applied their multiplier effect methodology to both our payroll and non-payroll spending. For example, when our employees spend their incomes on buying clothes or food from the farmer’s market, that allows the owners and workers at these companies to earn income. In turn, these individuals spend their incomes and the process multiplies through the economy. That multiplier is estimated to produce an additional $714.6 million of income for Tennesseans.

BlueCross income summary

Employing Tennesseans

At BlueCross, employees are at the center of the company. Without their dedication we couldn’t serve the health care needs of our 3.5 million members.

Thousands of employees work for BlueCross at six office locations across the state. Those employees and their efforts help generate 18,043 jobs. Those jobs include individuals employed by the company’s suppliers, and others created by the multiplier effect, which extends to a variety of industries throughout Tennessee.

BlueCross employees by region

Creating tax revenue to serve our neighbors

BlueCross generated $367.9 million in state and local tax revenues  – $245.2 million of which came in the form of premium tax revenue, $50.1 million from sales tax revenue, and $72.6 million from other tax revenue.

In addition to state and local taxes, we paid $184.4 million in federal income taxes, a significant portion of which are returned to the state in federal programs and funding.

Because BlueCross is based in Tennessee, the state and local governments benefit from payments made directly by us in the form of premiums collected as well as payroll and non-payroll spending.

And when you consider that our employees are taxed on their incomes and what they spend on goods and services, the impact multiplies.

Strengthening our home state

Since 1945, BlueCross has been helping to finance and improve the health care of generations of Tennesseans . While we’re doing what we love to do on behalf of our members each day, it’s gratifying to know we’re also making a positive impact on the economy of the state and those whom call Tennessee home.

*Denotes as of 2017.

About Mary Danielson, Director of Corporate Communications

A photo of the authorMary has more than 20 years of experience in communications related to the health care industry. Her responsibilities include guiding the development of communication strategies and messages that seek to educate and affect change.

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