BlueCross BlueShield’s Blue Fund Grants $100,000 to Say Yes Buffalo for Student Health Care Services

Grant Brings Health Plan’s total Investment in Say Yes to $1.4 Million-

Buffalo, N.Y. – In response to growing needs for students and families in Buffalo public and charter schools,BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York Blue Fund awarded $100,000 to Say Yes Buffalo to expand and enhance the organization’s successful Health Home Care Coordination program.

BlueCross BlueShield has invested more than $1.4 million to support the work of Say Yes Buffalo since 2012.

This includes a $298,848 Blue Fund grant in 2018, to pilot the Say Yes Health Home Care Coordination. The program provides school-based comprehensive care coordination, health promotion, patient and family support, and service referrals to local students in need.

Building on the success of the program, which is currently at capacity, these latest funds will enable an additional team of Say Yes Health Home Care Managers in K-12 Buffalo public and charter school buildings. The funding will also support a pilot partnership with local campus-based College Success Supervisors to support additional students with chronic health conditions as they transition into postsecondary programs.

“This pandemic has exposed some serious fault lines in our community around health care access and equity,” said David Rust, Executive Director of Say Yes Buffalo. “We’re honored to receive the continued support from BlueCross BlueShield’s Blue Fund, and we’re humbled to know that its leaders can count on our team to deliver these absolutely crucial services directly to families who need that extra layer of support to achieve better health outcomes. A healthier community is one that can realize its true potential for educational success.”

Since BlueCross BlueShield launched Blue Fund in July 2018, it awarded more than $5 million to organizations and initiatives that work collaboratively to address key health areas and demonstrate enhanced measurable outcomes for Western New York. The community-based, not-for-profit health plan pivoted its traditional 2020 Blue Fund grant cycle to support the most critical and immediate community needs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This included a $1 million grant to the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund.

“As the region’s largest not-for-profit health plan, BlueCross BlueShield is committed to supporting initiatives that strengthen and enrich our community,” said David W. Anderson, President, and CEO, BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York. “This Blue Fund grant builds on our longstanding partnership with Say Yes Buffalo to support Buffalo Public School students’ greatest health needs.”

Blue Fund grants, funded from the health plan’s strong reserves, are awarded in addition to the health plan’s current corporate partnerships and sponsorships, which saw investments of more than $2 million in Western New York in 2019.