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Charles Kennedy, M.D., Vice President for Health Information Technology, WellPoint, Inc., Appointed to National Health I.T. Policy Committee

INDIANAPOLIS, April 3 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The Government Accountability Office (GAO) today announced the appointment of Charles Kennedy, M.D., vice president for Health Information Technology, WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE: WLP), to the Health Information Technology Policy Committee, a new advisory body established by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. GAO, the investigative arm of Congress, helps meet legislators' needs for timely and reliable information on a wide range of government activities.

The Act, also known as the stimulus legislation, directed the Comptroller General to appoint 13 members to the committee for terms of three years. The committee will make recommendations on creating a policy framework for the development and adoption of a nationwide health information technology infrastructure, including standards for the exchange of patient medical information.

As the only representative of health plans or other third-party payers, Dr. Kennedy will play a vital role in ensuring health care value will be effectively represented in the health I.T. component of health reform and in guiding the development of a new infrastructure for higher quality, more efficient care.

"I welcome the opportunity to help shape the nation's health I.T. infrastructure," said Dr. Kennedy. "From global competitiveness to improving the health of the individual, I can think of no other activity more important than the deployment of health I.T. I expect to focus on tools that improve the efficiency and effectiveness of health care delivery."

At WellPoint, Dr. Kennedy is responsible for building technical solutions that leverage health plan data sets to help improve patient care. With over 20 years of health care experience, he has deployed several advanced health I.T. tools and was responsible for creating strategic acquisitions and investments in companies that focus on health care technology.

In additional to being a recognized expert in health I.T., Dr. Kennedy has served on multiple boards such as AHIC Successor, Inc, the National Alliance for Health Information Technology (NAHIT), the California Regional Health Information Organization (CalRHIO), and was a founding commissioner of the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT).

About WellPoint, Inc.

WellPoint is committed to improving the lives and health of the people and communities we serve by simplifying the connection between health, care and value. Our goal is to help shape the impact each health care decision has on individuals, the health care system at-large, and our communities. WellPoint's more than 42,000 associates work every day to help create the best health care value for our customers. Through collaborations with providers and with innovative programs, WellPoint's affiliated health plans reward healthy lifestyles and quality, safe and effective care. As the nation's largest health benefits company, with more than 35 million members in its affiliated health plans, WellPoint is at the center of the health care system. This position provides us with the relationships and insights needed to help create affordable and actionable solutions that improve health care.

As an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, WellPoint serves members as the Blue Cross licensee for California; the Blue Cross and Blue Shield licensee for Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri (excluding 30 counties in the Kansas City area), Nevada, New Hampshire, New York (as the Blue Cross Blue Shield licensee in 10 New York City metropolitan and surrounding counties and as the Blue Cross or Blue Cross Blue Shield licensee in selected upstate counties only), Ohio, Virginia (excluding the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C.), Wisconsin; and through UniCare. Additional information about WellPoint is available at

SOURCE WellPoint, Inc.
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