The California Optometric Association (COA) has honored Anthem Blue Cross of California with its “Health Care Leader – Visionary Award.” The award honors Anthem’s leadership in the fight against a costly and deadly epidemic of diabetes in California. It was presented at COA’s 2018 legislative conference to Joy Bland, regional vice president, clinical quality management, of Anthem Blue Cross Medi-Cal Health Plan.

“COA is proud to recognize Anthem Blue Cross of California’s visionary leadership on behalf of California patients,” said COA president Ranjeet S. Bajwa, OD. “Changing the dangerous trajectory of diabetes in California will require new thinking, bold leadership and strong partnerships. Anthem has brought all three to bear in addressing the diabetes crisis head-on. When doctors of optometry saw an opportunity to connect more Medi-Cal patients with life-saving diabetes care, Anthem fully embraced the potential to change lives for the better. We’ve created a model that can significantly improve diabetes care statewide. Most importantly, by working together, we’ve not only improved vision care for patients but opened the door to total health.”

Bland said, “We are honored to receive this award and are working to transform healthcare with trusted and caring solutions to best serve the needs of our Medi-Cal members. Our collaborative partnership with the California Optometric Association is critical to improve population health and create healthier communities in California.”

Over the past two years, Anthem Blue Cross Medi-Cal Health Plan has partnered with optometrists and health clinics to deliver life-saving, comprehensive diabetes screenings including eye exams to ensure diabetic patients have at least annual contact with a medical provider. With targeted outreach to diabetic patients who’ve had long breaks in care, the clinics aim to foster long-term relationships between patients and providers that lead to better health outcomes.



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