5 BCBS plans to combine: 8 things to know

Cambia Health Solutions, the parent company of four Blue Cross Blue Shield plans, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, are joining forces, the health insurers said March 12.

Eight things to know:

1. Cambia includes Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, Regence BlueShield in Washington, Regence BlueShield of Idaho and Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah.

2. Cambia covers 2.6 million people in the Pacific Northwest, while BCBS of North Carolina covers 3.7 million members.

3. The two nonprofit companies said the goal of the affiliation — which will maintain the separate health plans in five states — is to lower healthcare expenses, improve quality and improve consumer experience.

4. Rate review and other requirements will be completed under regulations in each plans' respective state.

5. Through a long-term management services agreement, the companies will share management, administrative, operational and other corporate services under the Cambia Health Solutions name.

6. Patrick Conway, MD, president and CEO of BCBS of North Carolina, will maintain that role and will also become Cambia's new CEO. Mark Ganz, president and CEO of Cambia, will be the executive chair of Cambia's board of directors.

7. The headquarters will be in Durham, N.C., and Portland, Ore.

8. The affiliation is subject to regulatory approval in North Carolina, Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Utah.

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