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Mission moment: an outreach call, friendship and a lifesaving test

Bobbie Dalton remembers the conversation that would change ─ and ultimately save ─ her life.

“BlueCross called to tell me I was covered to get a mammogram as part of my benefits,” she says.

As the safety administrator for Knoxville’s Pemberton Truck Lines, Bobbie routinely answers questions from employees about their medical coverage. When she doesn’t have the answer, she calls her BlueCross marketing liaison, Angela Wooten.

“If I can’t find an answer or if our drivers have questions, Angela explains health insurance like nobody I’ve ever known,” Bobbie says.

BlueCross Angela Wooten
Angela Wooten, left, works with customer and breast cancer survivor Bobbie Dalton.

Over the years, as the two have worked together, they’ve become friends. So it was no surprise that Bobbie checked with Angela about the call from BlueCross, especially since she couldn’t remember when she’d last had a breast cancer screening.

As her BlueCross representative, Angela told Bobbie that her health plan reaches out to members about recommended screenings. As her friend, she urged Bobbie to schedule a mammogram  and keep the appointment.

“I reminded Bobbie that her family depended on her,” Angela says. “She had to take care of herself or she couldn’t take care of anyone else.”

Support for a difficult diagnosis

With Angela’s encouragement, Bobbie scheduled the mammogram. Based on that screening, her doctor ordered more tests.

“Because we talk regularly, I called Angela the day they said I needed more tests,” Bobbie says.

The additional testing confirmed that Bobbie had breast cancer. Throughout surgery, radiation and recovery, Angela kept in touch, and she and Pemberton’s BlueCross Account Executive Wayne Webb sent cards.

“You always want your friends to have the best health,” Angela says. “Knowing that she might have a difficult journey was hard.”

Bobbie credits the call from BlueCross and the support of Angela for pushing her to take her health seriously.

“I don’t know how much longer I would have put off having a mammogram if they hadn’t called,” Bobbie says.

“You have to have a relationship with clients,” Angela adds. “They need to know they are someone important to you, and whether they call us or we call them, they will get a level of service that exceeds what they would get anywhere else.”

A new outlook and gratitude

Bobbie is approaching another year cancer-free. She says she’s a self-appointed “poster child for mammograms” and encourages others to get screened.

Her experience with the outreach team also helped her see her health plan in a new light: BlueCross was more personal.

“It made me feel like they are really here for me,” Bobbie adds.

Each time Angela calls or stops by with materials or to recognize Pemberton employees during National Truck Driver Appreciation Week, Bobbie’s reminded of that support.

“It’s not just my BlueCross rep dropping in,” Bobbie says.  “It’s Angela.”

Once a member has spent a few minutes with Angela, worked with her on a claim or talked to her about their benefits, they forget they’re working with BlueCross, insurance company. They’re working with someone who has given them her undivided attention and treated them like a person instead of a customer.

“Angela’s care and her heart for others make BlueCross an important, respected part of each customer’s life,” Wayne says. “Her support of Bobbie is a perfect example of what can happen when relationships are created out of sincere concern for people.”

BlueCross mission moment Angela Wooten

Angela herself feels blessed by Bobbie’s trust in her.           

“I hope when Bobbie thinks about our relationship and BlueCross, she thinks about helpfulness and caring,” Angela says. “I hope that trickles down to all of Pemberton’s employees, and all of our group customers for that matter, and that they realize we do everything we can to take care of them.”

About Marie Mosley, Principal Communications Specialist

A photo of the authorMarie joined the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee corporate communications team in 2012. A Florida native, she has 25 years of experience in public relations, community relations, speech writing and special event planning.

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