Blue Cross Blue Shield

Insurance Company

The Oklahoma plan for Group Hospital Services of Oklahoma opened its doors in the Tulsa Loan building at 4th and Main, March 15, 1940. The plan would soon adopt the Blue Cross name and logo. The interest in pre-paid hospital care had actually started in 1929 with a group of 1,500 school teachers in Dallas who contracted with Baylor Medical Center. These plans evolved as a result of the Great Depression.

In 1939, Oklahoma doctors went to Dallas to investigate this new form of paying for health care costs. The following year, Group Hospital Services of Oklahoma was born. The state headquarters was established in Tulsa since it was the first Oklahoma city to come up with $5,000 in seed money. By the end of 1949, Blue Cross of Oklahoma membership stood at 300,000 individuals and Blue Shield membership had reached over 169,000.

For more history of Blue Cross/Blue Shield, you are invited to listen to two former Blue Cross Chief Executive Officers, Ralph Rhoades and Ron King, on Voices of

The History of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma

Program Credits:
Ron King — Interviewee
Ralph Rhodes — Interviewee
John Erling — Interviewer
Mel Myers — Announcer

Honest Media
Mel Myers — Audio Editor

Müllerhaus Legacy Website Team
Douglas Miller — Art Director
Mark DeMoss — Webmaster
Laura Hyde — Upload Coordinator

Date Created: February 26, 2013

Date Published: February 9, 2015

Notes: Recorded by John Erling in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Digital Audio Sound Recording, Non-Music.

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