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Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Releases 2008 Financial Results

EAGAN, Minn., April 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota and its family of companies (Blue Cross) today released its financial results for 2008. The organization reported an overall net loss of $15.7 million (0.2 percent) on full-year revenues of $8.8 billion, with $8.0 billion paid to cover medical costs for members. The majority of the deficit was the result of net realized capital losses in the organization's investment portfolio. Overall, Blue Cross remains financially strong and operationally stable with statutory reserves equal to 2.2 months of claims and operating expenses.

Administrative expenses represented about 9.5 cents of every premium dollar collected in 2008. Additionally, Blue Cross paid more than $87 million in assessments and surcharges. Total enrollment was commensurate with the previous year, with 2.8 million members reported for 2008.

"Blue Cross is very stable financially, but as with most organizations, our annual results were affected by the economic downturn that began last year," said Michael Morrow, executive vice president and chief financial officer. "To weather this period, as well as address rising costs in health care, Blue Cross has been working to assure we continue keeping our administrative costs low. By focusing on appropriately moderating medical costs, we have helped to strengthen our bottom line. We expect these improvements to continue in 2009. Working to reduce the cost of care that Blue Cross purchases on behalf of our members will remain our top priority throughout the rest of the year."

Blue Plus - HMO results

Blue Plus - the company's health maintenance organization and a subsidiary of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota - reported a net loss of $13.1 million in 2008, representing less than 2 percent of its $1.0 billion in revenue for the year. The administrative cost ratio for Blue Plus was 8 percent - a figure that includes agent fees, taxes, assessments, and $14.1 million in cost containment measures and health initiative investments for 154,000 members.

Blue Cross and its family of companies' annual consolidated earnings statement will be published on

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, with headquarters in the St. Paul suburb of Eagan, was chartered in 1933 as Minnesota's first health plan and continues to carry out its charter mission today: to promote a wider, more economical and timely availability of health services for the people of Minnesota. A not-for-profit, taxable organization, Blue Cross is the largest health plan based in Minnesota, covering 2.8 million members in Minnesota and nationally through its health plans or plans administered by its affiliated companies. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, headquartered in Chicago. Go to to learn more about Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota.

SOURCE Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota
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