According to an economic impact study conducted by the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina, and released publicly today by BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, the organization contributes $4.8 billion annually to South Carolina and its overall economic impact to the state is comparable to the impact of an entire industry.
The report looked at the total economic impact on the state as well as the impact of each individual branch on its local region using a research model that estimated economic output, employment and labor income. Through the lens of the economic multiplier effect, the report concluded that the organization’s employment of more than 10,000 “either directly or through hired contractors and temporary positions, led to approximately 26,324 jobs attributed to the presence of BCBS.”
David Pankau, BlueCross’ president and chief executive officer, called the findings illustrative. He said, “In December we celebrated our 65th anniversary, which was a milestone signifying not only longevity, but stability even in a challenging economy. While most people think of the organization as a health plan, the diversification of our enterprise and strength of our technology platform are key factors also in our ability to create good paying jobs for South Carolinians. These findings restate the enormous responsibility and privilege we have as a major employer and driver of the state’s economic health.”
Otis Rawl, president and CEO of South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, concurred. He added, “These findings confirm what many of us have known, which is the importance of BCBS to South Carolina’s statewide infrastructure cannot be overstated. Not only is it a critical player in reducing the trend of rising health care costs, which is a pressing issue for our members, but its leadership in the technology sector continues to attract other business to the state while its diversification impacts the entire geography.”
Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., and operating in South Carolina for 65 years, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. The only South Carolina-owned and operated health insurance carrier, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina comprises more than 47 companies involved in health insurance services, U.S. DoD health program and Medicare contracts, other insurance and employee benefits services, and a philanthropic foundation that funds programs to improve health care and access to health care for South Carolinians.