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10/18/12 08:01PM
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Heart association to honor blue cross with gold heart award

The American Heart Association will present the Richard M. Oster Gold Heart Award to Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (Blue Cross) President and CEO Peter Andruszkiewicz at a celebratory …

The American Heart Association will present the Richard M. Oster Gold Heart Award to Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (Blue Cross) President and CEO Peter Andruszkiewicz at a celebratory luncheon on Dec. 5, 2012 at the Rhode Island Convention Center.

The Gold Heart award is given annually to an individual or organization that has demonstrated extraordinary commitment to Rhode Island. Mr. Andruszkiewicz will accept the award on behalf of Blue Cross for the organization’s support of numerous local charities, community wellness initiatives and for its employees’ remarkable volunteer efforts.

The state’s largest health insurer, Blue Cross supports local nonprofit organizations with financial and in-kind donations in addition to significant volunteer assistance to address critical health issues, particularly those affecting the uninsured/underinsured and most vulnerable.

Last year nearly 800 volunteers (employees and their families and friends) participated in the BlueAngel Community Outreach Program and contributed 3,448 hours to organizations throughout the Ocean State. In 2011 alone, Blue Cross’ financial support and the cash equivalent of their volunteers’ time exceeded $1 million. Most recently, Blue Cross coordinated the largest ever single-company statewide employee day of service – Blue across Rhode Island – where 750 associates were deployed to 13 community agencies to partake in various volunteer projects, including assembling children’s nutrition bags, landscaping, painting and supervising wellness screenings for the uninsured.

In addition, for 18 years, Blue Cross has been recognizing employers for their work around worksite wellness. To date, several thousand members of the Rhode Island business community have received Worksite Health Awards for their efforts at improving the health of thousands of their local employees and families.

Blue Cross also hosts many community wellness initiatives targeting the state’s vulnerable populations, including free educational seminars, preventive screenings on their mobile wellness van and free flu vaccination for the uninsured.

This is the 17th year of the Gold Heart Award Luncheon, which has raised more than $1.7 million for the American Heart Association and the fight against heart disease and stroke. For more information, please call 401-330-1706.

About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary health organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. Our mission is to build healthier lives by preventing, treating and defeating these diseases – America’s No. 1 and No. 3 killers. We fund cutting-edge research, conduct lifesaving public and professional educational programs, and advocate to protect public health.

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