Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan's "Go Pink" Campaign supports American Cancer Society's® Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

Blues to walk in Detroit, Kalamazoo on Saturday, Oct. 15

October 13, 2011

DETROIT — Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is leveraging its presence in three of the state’s core communities in support of the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks.

The noncompetitive three- to five-mile walks held across the state during October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, to raise funds to help save lives from the devastating affects of breast cancer.

Blue Cross has put together employee walking teams in Detroit and in the Kalamazoo/Grand Rapids area for walks at the following locations on Oct. 15:

Detroit - Belle Isle Park

Time: 7:30 a.m. registration, rolling walk start between 8 and 10 a.m.

Kalamazoo - Arcadia Creek Festival site

Time: 9 a.m. registration, 10 a.m. walk start.

Blue Cross is also forming a team for a Making Strides walk in Lansing held on Oct. 29.

“The Blues believe in the power of walking and its tremendous benefits towards healthier lifestyles, so we’re proud to walk in support of this important cause,” said Daniel J. Loepp, president and CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “We need to do all we can to bring more awareness to the issue of breast cancer and provide more women access to mammograms.”

Both Blue Cross and the American Cancer Society are actively engaged in efforts to increase public awareness about the role healthy lifestyle choices play in helping avoid disease and educate women about the importance of regular mammograms.

“We’re proud to have Blue Cross employees walking across the State of Michigan in support of our efforts to prevent breast cancer, provide programs and services to those currently in treatment, and build awareness around the importance of mammography,” said Jill Elder, vice president, American Cancer Society, Great Lakes Division. “By participating in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, Blue Cross employees are making an investment in women in Michigan and providing critical funding in the fight against this disease.”

The walks are part of a larger effort by the Blues to bring increased awareness to breast cancer and to raise funds to fight the disease. Other activities for the month include:

  • Donating $10,000 to the American Cancer Society during the Detroit Lions football game Oct. 10 at Ford Field
  • Partnering with School Pride Fundraising to provide The Curable Towel in bright pink to 50,000 fans at the Oct. 10 Monday Night Lions game 
  • Partnering with the Pontiac Osteopathic Hospital Riley Foundation to help eligible women receive vouchers for free mammograms
  • Telling the stories of five breast cancer survivors on as part of our Tales of Cure-Age series
    Breast cancer’s impact

According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women, exceeded only by lung cancer. Following are other key statistics:

  • The chance that breast cancer will be responsible for a woman's death is about 1 in 36, or approximately 3 percent
  • Death rates from breast cancer have been declining since 1990, with larger decreases in women younger than 50
  • These decreases are believed to be the result of earlier detection through screening and increased awareness, as well as improved treatment 
  • There are currently more than 2.6 million breast cancer survivors in the United States 

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit organization, provides and administers health benefits to more than 4.3 million members residing in Michigan in addition to members of Michigan-headquartered groups who reside outside the state. The company offers a broad variety of plans including Community BlueSM, Simply BlueSM and Healthy Blue IncentivesSM PPOs; Blue Care Network HMO; BCN Healthy Blue LivingSM; Flexible BlueSM plans compatible with health savings accounts; Medicare Advantage; Part D Prescription Drug plans; and MyBlueSM products in the under-age-65 individual market. BCBSM also offers dental, vision and hearing plans. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more company information, visit

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