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Healthcare Advocates from the Start

They said it couldn’t be done, so a group of caring but persistent Wyoming women set out to prove them wrong.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Wyoming originated when the ladies of the Wyoming Farm Bureau saw families and neighbors struggling to afford critical healthcare services during the Great Depression. They had heard about an innovative approach to financing healthcare where groups of people pooled resources to help families avoid financial ruin in the event of a medical catastrophe. It was known as healthcare insurance—a new concept.

They set their sites on contacting the national Blue Cross Association in Chicago in regard to bringing health insurance to Wyoming. But they were advised that Wyoming was too small and didn’t have the population to support its own Plan.

Determined, the people of Wyoming didn’t stop there. In 1945, the Wyoming Hospital Service was organized as a non-profit corporation on a $5,000 non-interest bearing loan from the Wyoming Farm Bureau, the smallest amount ever used to fund a Blue Plan.

Today, BCBSWY insures more than 100,000 members. With a large geographical area and a relatively small population, we’re in a unique position to develop benefit plans that meet the needs of every individual and employer group in the state.

While we’ve been here insuring this state since 1945, we’ve also been working behind the scenes with policy makers and the medical community to improve access to healthcare for Wyoming. We are proud of our role as a statewide leader in finding solutions to community health issues, and we continue to focus on initiatives designed to improve the health and quality of life for Wyoming residents.

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