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SC BlueCross’ New Mount Pleasant Store Puts Focus on Individual Consumer

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Seizing upon consumers’ need for information in the new environment of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is expanding its outreach to focus more directly on individuals, including the opening of a new store in Mount Pleasant this week.

The South Carolina BLUESM retail center will be open year round to sell insurance and provide customer support. The public is invited to the grand opening 10 a.m.– 2 p.m. on Saturday at the store, at 1795 North Highway 17 in Towne Center Place.

The store will provide service to current members as well as guide potential customers through the shopping and enrollment process. It also is intended to serve as a community resource. Store staff will provide information, answer questions about the ACA, host free healthy lifestyle classes and participate in community events. On Wednesday (Oct. 30), the store will serve as a drop-off site for donated cellphones for soldiers.

Policies sold will be insured by BlueCross or by its subsidiary company, BlueChoice® HealthPlan of South Carolina. Appointments are preferred but not necessary. Opening hours are 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m.– 6 p.m. on Saturdays.

“Purchasing insurance can be complex and confusing, especially to first-time buyers. Establishing a retail presence is one of our many efforts to make this easier by providing information face to face in a comfortable environment,” said Terry Peace, senior vice president of small group and individual insurance. “While we continue to serve business group health plans, we’re making a concerted effort to reach out more directly to the individual consumer, and we’ll be here for the long term.”

At the grand opening on Saturday, visitors may seek information about insurance while enjoying food and giveaways, a balloon artist, a photo booth, a jump castle, games and other special activities. The South Carolina BLUE mobile unit, a colorful 40-foot vehicle that travels the state selling insurance and providing customer service, also will be on site.

BlueCross worked with Colliers International to locate and lease the 4,190-square-foot site. CJMW Architecture provided design and Clayton Construction Co. managed the site renovation.

BlueCross was one of the first health insurance companies in the nation to go retail, opening its first store in 2009 in Mount Pleasant. The company opened its second store earlier this year in Greenville and launched the mobile retail unit last month. The mobile unit makes appearances at large urban gatherings, such as the Turkey Day Run in Charleston on Nov. 28, and in smaller cities and towns where the company does not have a retail presence. BlueCross plans to open more retail outlets elsewhere in the state over the new few years.

Information and events at any South Carolina BLUE retail location may be found at www.SCBlueRetailCenters.com. The public may follow South Carolina BLUE on Facebook at SC Blue Retail and on Twitter at @SCBlueRetail using #SCBlue.

About BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina

Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., and operating in South Carolina for more than 65 years, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. The only South Carolina-owned and operated health insurance carrier, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina comprises 47 companies involved in health insurance services, U.S. DoD health program and Medicare contracts, other insurance and employee benefits services, and a philanthropic foundation that funds programs to improve health care and access to health care for South Carolinians. BlueChoice HealthPlan of South Carolina (www.BlueChoiceSC.com) also is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
 

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