New report includes expanded data around social risk factors, mental health, maternal health, and childhood immunizations
CHATTANOOGA – BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee (BCBST) is building on its commitment to understand and address health disparities with the release of its second annual Health Equity Report. In the 2024 version, BCBST added a section on social drivers of health featuring the company’s proprietary Social Risk Index and highlighted efforts to help improve health outcomes.
Using data from several publicly available sources, the report was published for the first time in 2023 with a focus on how social factors impact physical and mental wellbeing. This year’s edition highlights the impact of 20 key social risk factors, and provides updated data on key health categories including:
- behavioral health,
- child & adolescent well-care,
- chronic condition management (high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma), and
- maternal health.
“What really stands out to me in this second report is that this data is needed now more than ever,” said Dr. Andrea Willis, chief medical officer. “We have prioritized support for health literacy, immunization, well-child screenings, and mental health services because we know that’s where we can have the greatest impact. We’re really encouraged by what we learned in the production of the initial report and how we were able to use that data to better serve our members and communities across Tennessee.”
Our new 2024 report reveals that:
- Maternal health disparities persist, and they play a role in maternal mortality – substance abuse contributed to 39% of all pregnancy-related deaths
- In Tennessee, Hispanic members are the least likely of all racial groups to be screened for colorectal cancer at the recommended age
- One in four Tennesseans had a mental illness in 2021, and Black members were less likely than members of other races to receive follow-up care within 7 days of a hospitalization
To review the Health Equity Report and more of its key findings, visit https://www.bcbst.com/healthequity.
About BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee
BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee is a taxpaying, not-for-profit health plan serving more than 3.4 million members in Tennessee and around the country. The Chattanooga-based company was founded in 1945 and has brought peace of mind to its members and local communities for more than 75 years. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. For more information, visit the company’s news center at bcbstnews.com.