Ramsey County History Magazine: Volume 20-2 1985

Ramsey County History magazine offers a wide variety of articles on the people, places and history of Ramsey County.

Volume 20

Volume 20, Number 2: 1985

Health Care Crisis of the 1920s—A ‘National Epidemic’ Launches Blue Cross and Blue Shield
Author: Gary Phelps
The article focuses on Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota. In 1932 the Hospital Service Association of St. Paul was organized to operate a nonprofit prepaid hospitalization plan. In 1935 the association and a group of Minneapolis hospitals merged their plans into the Minnesota
Hospital Service Association, with headquarters in the Midway area of St. Paul. Blue Cross became a national model. In 1940 the number of participating hospitals reached 75, the number of subscribers, over 380,000. Growth continued through World War II. Blue Shield, a plan for the prepayment of medical expenses, was started in 1945. The two organizations were separate but cooperated. They survived various stresses and both reached about a million subscribers by 1960. The two parted ways, but in 1972 the two organizations completed a merger.
PDF of Phelps article

PDF of Board of Directors