Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is closely monitoring the Ebola situation for its potential impact on our business, customers, employees, and community. We are staying in touch with state and federal authorities and our physician and hospital partners, and, of course, our highest priority would be to ensure that our members have access to timely and appropriate care in the unlikely event of an outbreak here.
Our company has invested significant efforts in preparation for responding to an outbreak. We would play a critical role as both a health plan and a community leader. If this happens, our priorities would be to enable continued access to care for our members, ensure the safety and wellbeing of our employees, support constituents with helpful information, and assist with community efforts. For example, our company can facilitate members' access to emergency care, prescriptions, and more. This may also include the suspension of routine policies or procedures as directed by state and federal officials.
Additionally, our company’s workforce is highly mobile and can work remotely during emergencies. We have successfully activated and tested our preparedness capabilities several times for weather emergencies, practice exercises, and other incidents to support our customers.
For your information
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “The 2014 Ebola epidemic is the largest in history, affecting multiple countries in West Africa. Although the risk of an Ebola outbreak in the United States is very low, CDC and partners are taking precautions to prevent this from happening.”
The CDC also states that Ebola is not spread through the air or by water, or in
general, by food. Ebola is spread through direct contact with:
- blood or body fluids of a person who is sick with Ebola
- objects (like needles and syringes) that have been contaminated with the virus
- infected animals
For more information about Ebola, visit the CDC’s website here: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/. Also, you can visit the Massachusetts Department of Public Health's website here: http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/gov/departments/dph/programs/emergency-prep/threats/biological/ebola-virus.html.