CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — The Health Ethics Trust® recently named BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee a winner in its Best Compliance Practice Awards for 2007. BlueCross was specifically recognized for its delegate oversight program in the category of vendor relationships and the impact of that oversight on ethics practices, contracting and monitoring compliance.

“We are committed to providing quality services to our members,” said Irv Koehler, senior manager of quality management for BlueCross. “One important way we achieve this is through our delegate oversight program, which ensures that the vendors we select are compliant with state and federal laws and regulations.”

An independent panel of compliance professionals from health care and non-health related industries led the peer review judging process. Other award categories included: contract management; integrating audit and internal controls with ethics and compliance; using technology to audit and monitor activity for compliance; response to internal investigations of improper conduct and corrective action procedures; compliance involvement in medical error reduction and patient safety; and HIPAA implementation.

The Best Compliance Practice Awards are the only such honors for compliance and integrity practices in the nation’s health care industry. Awards were presented Nov. 5-6 during the annual Health Care Best Compliance Practices Forum in Alexandria, Va.

Founded in 1995 as a response to growing compliance and ethics concerns, the Health Ethics Trust provides a variety of educational, research and advisory services to providers, managed care organizations, payors, health plans, suppliers, home care agencies and pharmaceutical companies.

About BlueCross

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee's mission is to provide its customers and communities with peace of mind through affordable solutions for health and healing, life and living. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on reinventing the health plan for its 3 million members in Tennessee and across the country. Through its integrated health management approach, BlueCross provides patient-centric products and services that drive health improvement and positively impact health care quality and value. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company's website at www.bcbst.com.