Press Releases

Friday, December 18, 2020

Highmark launches new high performing networks in central Pennsylvania

  • Local employers can offer access to high-performing doctors and hospitals with lower costs

Camp Hill, Pa. (December 18, 2020) — Highmark has launched two new high-performing networks in Pennsylvania that will help employers in central Pennsylvania offer workers access to the best local doctors and hospitals at the lowest cost.

Known as Performance Blue and Performance Flex Blue, the high-performing networks are focused on delivering quality care and lowering cost through strong relationships with local providers such as, but not limited to, Penn State Health, WellSpan Health, Lancaster General Health and Lehigh Valley Health Network and who are participating in Highmark’s value-based care initiatives.

Those value-based care initiatives include the True Performance program, which has achieved more than $1 billion in avoided cost savings while also improving outcomes for members. Highmark’s claims data for years 2017, 2018 and 2019 has shown that through the collaborative efforts with providers the program’s outcomes have helped to avoid unnecessary   Emergency Department (ED) visits and reduce hospital re-admissions. 

Primary Care Physicians, specialists, and hospitals in the Performance Blue and Performance Flex Blue networks have met clinical measures for patient care and also offer significant potential to close gaps in healthcare, improve outcomes, and holistically address how effective care should be provided to patients.

“Due to the strengths of our relationships with Penn State Health, WellSpan Health, Lancaster General Health and Lehigh Valley Health Network and other providers participating in our value-based care initiatives, coupled with our data collection and market experience, we are able to provide even greater value to employers in central Pennsylvania and across the state with Performance Blue and Performance Flex Blue,” said John Lufburrow, regional vice president of Sales for Highmark. “As employers continue to face challenges related to the pandemic, Performance Blue and Performance Flex Blue offer options to provide employees with access to great care locally with lower costs.”

Performance Flex Blue will offer PPO and PPO Qualified High Deductible plans, as well as an EPO and EPO Qualified High Deductible plans as a tiered benefit design. It is available for self-insured and fully insured large employer groups beginning Jan. 1, 2021. Performance Blue will also offer PPO, PPO Qualified High Deductible plans, EPO and EPO Qualified High Deductible plans for self- and fully insured large employer groups, but with a more select network of doctors and hospitals.

Lufburrow added that Highmark’s ChoiceBlue product is also a great health insurance option for customers in central Pennsylvania and gives them access to high quality, coordinated care, leading to improved outcomes.

Highmark has also announced that it will be participating in a new national network of higher quality providers who deliver better and more affordable care called Blue High Performance Network (Blue HPN). Starting Jan. 1, 2021, more than 185 million Americans in more than 55 major markets will have access to Blue HPN across the country.

About Highmark Blue Shield
Highmark Inc., doing business as Highmark Blue Shield, serves approximately 1.1 million members through the company’s health care benefits business and hundreds of thousands of additional individuals through the BlueCard® program. Highmark Blue Shield has significant commercial market share and strong Medicare Advantage membership [through certain of its affiliated Blue companies] as well. Through its affiliated Blue companies, all of Highmark's Medicare Advantage plans in Pennsylvania received a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services quality rating of 4.5 out of 5.0 stars. Highmark Blue Shield employs approximately 3,500 people in central Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley, serving as a key economic driver in the region. Highmark Blue Shield’s total economic impact throughout central Pennsylvania is more than $978 million.  Highmark Blue Shield is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies. 

For more information, contact

Leilyn Perri
Highmark Health