I love my job at Volunteer State Health Plan (VSHP), a wholly-owned subsidiary of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. VSHP focuses on managing care and providing quality health care products, services, and information for government programs like TennCare.
At VSHP I serve as a community care partner in our outreach program, a program designed to help people access the health care support they need, when they need it. It’s the greatest job in the world. There's no other job where cause and effect are so tightly coupled, where you can make a difference in so many people's lives, in countless ways, every day.
In our communities, there are hundreds of families who don’t know how to care for their health. Some have difficulty accessing health care services and others face social issues that prevent them from making their health care a priority. The result is that they live each day feeling less healthy. That's where I begin to make a difference among both the TennCare members we serve and the public at-large.
Unlike the make up of most jobs, I’m not confined to just one task or to four walls. I am very visible and hands-on in the community and serve in numerous roles—from educator and event planner to consultant and mediator.
I've spoken with pregnant mothers on what to expect during their first year of motherhood. I’ve addressed teens on making healthy lifestyle choices. I’ve encouraged senior’s to stay active. And I’ve educated obese adults on the risks of diabetes.
I’ve also had the privilege of helping people during their time of need. Throughout the economic downturn I've distributed thousands of backpacks with school supplies to students, provided resources to the homeless, and sponsored events and programs that otherwise would have lost funding.
To me, all these situations are humbling and allow me to experience and show humanity to the people that VSHP serves. As a community care partner I understand the barriers our members face. In many cases, they are unable to visit a doctor because they do not have transportation or do not understand how to successfully access services that are available to them. I listen to our members needs and take steps to help them successfully obtain these services. My main focus are the members, and my goal is to do whatever I can do to improve their lives, and their health.
I love my job because it provides a valuable purpose. Many people have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through loyalty to a worthy purpose. I'm doing what I think I was put on this earth to do--which is help other people better their lives. And I'm really grateful to have a job that I'm passionate about and that I think is profoundly important.
Jeremy Scruggs, Community Care Partner for Volunteer State Health Plan