Anthem Blue Cross of California


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Anthem Blue Cross (the trade name for Blue Cross of California) was founded in 1937 as a not-for-profit entity and converted to for-profit status in 1992.   Through a series of mergers, the California company became part of Anthem, Inc., one of the largest health insurance companies in the United States.  According to Anthem, “one in nine Americans receives coverage for their medical care through Anthem’s affiliated plans.”

As of 2013, Anthem Blue Cross covered 20 percent of the total commercial market (2.7 million people) with health insurance in California.  Within the California small group market, about 600,000 people, or 25 percent of the small companies with health insurance, had coverage through Anthem.

Anthem Blue Cross offers Blue Cross Blue Shield Association insurance plans including: HMO, PPO, EPO, Health Savings Account (H.S.A.) compatible plans for individuals, small groups, large groups, Medi-Cal enrollees, and senior Medicare Supplemental and Medicare Advantage plans.


California Products & Services

Anthem Blue Cross of California offers a wide range of health insurance products and services. These include health maintenance organizations (HMO), point of service (POS) arrangements, preferred provider organizations (PPO), and exclusive provider organizations (EPO). They also offer dental, life, vision, long term care, and senior plans. Employers and individuals benefit from the combination of all of these products in one company – as all products are combined onto one bill. In addition, their integrated provider networks take a comprehensive approach to controlling costs and managing the total health status of patients. This promotes a relationship with their customers as a trusted partner.


Anthem Blue Cross of California Health Insurance Plans

Learn about some of the plans offered:

Tonik Thrill Seeker – offers young thrill seekers health coverage in case of illness or serious injury.

Anthem Blue Cross ClearProtection $1000 Plus

Anthem Blue Cross ClearProtection $3300 Plus

Anthem Blue Cross ClearProtection $5000 Plus

Anthem Blue Cross CoreGuard Plus

Anthem Blue Cross Premier Plus

Anthem Blue Cross SmartSense Plus


Additional Information about Anthem Blue Cross of CA

Business Approach

Anthem Blue Cross’s business approach is to provide consumers with choice. In an effort to provide excellent customer service, the company is organized by customer segment (e.g., individual, small group, large group, seniors, etc.) rather than by product type (HMO, PPO, etc.) This organizational arrangement allows them to offer a large selection of Blue Cross insurance products. In addition to focusing on consumers, the company works hard to be an ally with doctors, hospitals and other professionals in the health care field. The combination of consumer choice and medical provider partnerships, allows them to offer low cost health insurance to California residents.

Anthem Blue Cross of CA has extensive technical, financial and professional expertise so that it can offer access to affordable health care services. Members are empowered by the health care information the Company provides. Knowledge and access to health care enable their members to cost effectively purchase health care services. In this way it is a “health care financing” organization. It is also the largest member of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.


Large Group Division

Anthem’s Large Group Division serves employers with 51 to 500,000 employees and currently provides health insurance coverage to more than 3.8 million people. The Large Group Division is separated into three departments: key accounts (51-250 employees); major accounts (251-2,000 employees); and, special accounts (2,001 and more employees.)

The Large Group Division also includes Anthem Blue Cross of California’s public entities department that serves education and local, state, and national governments, including the Federal Employees Plan and Federal Employees HMO plan.


Individual and Small Group Division

Anthem Blue Cross of California’s Individual and Small Group Division provides coverage to more than 1.6 million members. Small group employers have 50 or fewer employees. It has a very large PPO provider network and their plans are very competitively priced. So, you should be able to find the doctors you want to visit in the Blue Cross PPO network. They have recently introduced the Right Plan 40 with and without prescription medicine. These have been very popular plans because of their low premiums and because the plans have no deductible



Anthem Blue Cross has many Medicare supplemental plans for seniors. The Company is expanding its offerings to seniors to accommodate the baby boom population which will be maturing soon. The Blue Cross Smart Choice and Smart Choice Plus Medicare Supplemental policies are very popular. These are high deductible Plan F Medicare supplements. The plans offer generic prescription medicine as well as medical services. The plans have a very low monthly premium and, because they wrap around Medicare, there is very little financial exposure for those enrolled in the plans.


State Sponsored Programs

California Anthem Blue Cross health insurance provides services for many programs sponsored by the State of California. With 811,000 Medi-Cal (Medicaid) members and more than 244,000 children in the Healthy Families Program, it is the largest health plan provider for state sponsored plans in California. They also participates in the Access for Infants and Mothers (AIM) program and the Major Risk Medical Insurance Program (MRMIP) which are also California state sponsored plans.


Specialty Products

Anthem BlueCross of California also has non-health insurance products including disability, life, vision, dental and long term care insurance, as well as COBRA administration, behavioral health, flexible spending accounts. In addition, large employers which self-insure their health care expenses often contract with them for pharmacy benefit management and utilization management.


HealthCare Quality Assurance

Anthem strives to provide affordable high quality medical care at the lowest price possible. The Company’s Healthcare Quality Assurance Division coordinates health care management and medical policy matters. This division seeks to improve business operations by assessing, recognizing and promoting quality health care. The division works closely with network doctors and hospitals to improve quality. They work to reduce administrative costs and look to simplify administration – often by using technology to electronically deliver health care information. The Healthcare Quality Assurance Division has many programs to share information with medical care providers which helps them make the best medical decisions for patients.



Anthem’s California health insurance has extensive networks of health care professionals and facilities. Blue Cross of CA seeks to work with physicians, hospitals clinicians, laboratories and others to combine every aspect of health care into one efficient organization. Accordingly, within a single company, health care financing and service delivery are well integrated. Their health care network includes about 465 hospitals and more than 46,000 physicians -making it one of the largest networks in the state of California.


News & Resources

SmileNet Dental Discount Program – a new program offering discounted rates at any of over 12,000 dentists in the network at the low negotiated rates.

What Happened to Insurance for Maternity – Many affordable California health insurance plans do not offer maternity coverage. Learn why and what families can do.

Low Cost Small Group Health Insurance in California – a new line of low cost health insurance plans for small companies called “BeneFits”.


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