Blue Cross Blue Shield of WNY Response To Supreme Court Decision

June 28, 2012 Updated Jun 28, 2012 at 11:07 AM EDT

By WKBW News


Blue Cross Blue Shield of WNY Response To Supreme Court Decision

June 28, 2012 Updated Jun 28, 2012 at 11:07 AM EDT

Buffalo, NY –( release ) BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York, the largest health insurer in the community whose roots date back to 1936, are committed to adhering to the United States Supreme Court’s ruling regarding the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Supreme Court, the highest ranking court in country, ruled that the ACA has been upheld in its entirety.

The basis for today’s Supreme Court decision originated from legislation that was created to address the fundamental principle and belief that all Americans should have access to quality, affordable health care.

This historic decision, regardless of where individual opinion may reside, will impact the future of health care in our country. The nation’s conversation around the issue has already created momentum for innovation and increased awareness around the drivers of medical costs.

“For more than 75 years, we have been committed to provide high-quality health care coverage, offering security and stability to our members,” Alphonso O’Neil-White, President and CEO, BlueCross BlueShield, said. “As we continue to implement the law, we will work with policymakers to resolve provisions in the Affordable Care Act that result in increased costs. On behalf of our BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York members, we will continue to lead efforts in local communities — partnering with doctors, nurses, hospitals, and others — to help people stay well, control costs, improve quality and better manage their care when they need it.

“We’ve seen many changes in health care over the years. The one thing that hasn’t changed — and will not change — is our commitment to providing our members security and stability when it comes to their health care.”

Given the complexity of the ruling, BlueCross BlueShield will hold a Supreme Court Symposium on Friday, June 29, 2012 at 10 a.m. and will stream it live at The Symposium will create a working situational room where subject matter experts will discuss the decision of the Supreme Court and give insight and perspective of the Court’s ruling on the ACA, which was signed into law by President Barack Obama on March 23.

Subject matter experts will discuss the ruling and offer insights on how the Supreme Court’s decision affects the Western New York region. Panelists include, Tony Shelley, Miller & Chevalier, Washington, DC; Former Congressman John LaFalce; Bill Keefer, Phillips Lytle, Health Law Practice Team Leader; Jim Kaskie, CEO, Kaleida Health; LaVonne Ansari, Ph. D., CEO/Executive Director Community Health Center of Buffalo; Dr. Tom Rosenthal, Chair, SUNY at Buffalo Family Medicine; and Don Ingalls, vice president state & federal relations for BlueCross BlueShield, and chair of the Health Plan Association.

“BlueCross BlueShield is honored to take a leading role in providing the community with informative insight into the Supreme Court’s ruling and how the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will unfold at the state and federal levels,” O’Neil-White, said. “As the market leader in the region, the impact of this ruling touches our members, health care and professional partners, and community entities, and we are pleased to provide a forum that is inclusive through technology.”

Moderators for the event are: Keith Radford, WKBW-TV, Channel 7; Susan Rose, WBEN-AM; and Jerry Zremski, Washington Bureau Chief, Buffalo News.

Media outlets represented in the Symposium will also stream the event live for the Western New York community and local, regional and national audiences. The event will be streamed on

Supreme Court Symposium Event Timeline:

· 10:00 a.m. – Alphonso O’Neil-White, president and CEO of BlueCross BlueShield, welcomes attendees
· 10:05 a.m. – Introduction of moderators and panelists
· 10:10 a.m. – General overview of ruling, Tony Shelley, Miller & Chevalier, Washington, DC
· 10:15 a.m. – Moderators conduct inclusive Q&A with panelists
· 11:15 a.m. – Questions from audience
· 11:30 a.m. – Conclusion of formal session

This is not a public event given capacity of Conference Room. Select BlueCross BlueShield members, brokers, business and community leaders have been invited to attend/participate as well as credentialed media.