Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Continues Funding for Mobile Childhood Vaccination Program


EAGAN, Minn., Feb. 23, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota (Blue Cross) today announced ongoing support for a childhood immunization program administered by Hennepin Healthcare through 2023. The mobile vaccination clinic, which began as a pilot program in 2020, recently received a Blue Cross Trailblazer Award for its innovative approach to addressing significant declines in routine childhood vaccinations during the COVID-19 pandemic.



According to a study by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, vaccination rates for highly contagious but preventable diseases  –  including measles, whooping cough and polio – declined by 26 percent in 2020, due to multiple barriers associated with the pandemic. Additionally, a recent study from the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) concluded that interventions are needed to promote “catch-up” vaccines in children, particularly in populations at risk for underimmunization.

“Looking at the decrease in childhood vaccinations, we knew the best course of action was to deliver care to where the patients were,” said Dr. Dawn Martin, medical director for the Pediatric Mobile Clinic at Hennepin Healthcare. “The initial funding from Blue Cross allowed us to get this program off the ground and prove that it works. Now, we are able to continue this important work and improve upon what we’ve started.”

Over the past two years, Hennepin Healthcare’s mobile vaccination unit – the Pediatric Mobile Clinic – has administered thousands of vaccines to area children, eliminating barriers to care and improving health equity by bringing preventive care directly to families. Plans for 2022 include a larger geographical reach; additional preventive services; expansion of COVID-19 vaccinations; enhanced social determinant of health screenings and referrals; and a new and larger vehicle that can better accomodate patient visits.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed significant gaps in health equity that have always existed, particularly in our diverse communities,” said Bukata Hayes, vice president of racial and health equity at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota. “This mobile immunization program from Hennepin Healthcare is a perfect example of a sustainable solution to bridge these gaps and achieve better health for everyone. Providing additional funding to keep this work going was an easy decision and will lead to lower overall costs associated with preventable health interventions over the long term.”

To learn more about what Blue Cross is doing to create healthier communities and advance racial and health equity, please visit bluecrossmn.com/equity.

About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota

For nearly 90 years, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota (bluecrossmn.com) has supported the health, wellbeing and peace of mind of our members by striving to ensure equitable access to high quality care at an affordable price. Our 2.5 million members can be found in every Minnesota county, all 50 states and on four continents. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association

About Hennepin Healthcare

Hennepin Healthcare is an integrated system of care that includes HCMC, a nationally recognized Level I Adult Trauma Center and Level I Pediatric Trauma Center and acute care hospital, as well as a clinic system with primary care clinics located in Minneapolis and across Hennepin County. The comprehensive healthcare system includes a 484-bed academic medical center, a large outpatient Clinic & Specialty Center, and a network of clinics in the North Loop, and Whittier neighborhoods of Minneapolis, and in the suburban communities of Brooklyn Park, Golden Valley, Richfield, and St. Anthony Village. Hennepin Healthcare has a large psychiatric program, home care and hospice, and operates a research institute, philanthropic foundation, and Hennepin EMS. The system is operated by Hennepin Healthcare System, Inc., a subsidiary corporation of Hennepin County.

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SOURCE Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota



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