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IBX Clients and Associates Tackle Business Challenges at the Newly Opened Independence Center for Innovation

By December 3, 2019May 18th, 2023Employers Innovations in Health Care
Inside of the Independence Center for Innovation

Innovation has long been a part of the culture here at Independence Blue Cross (Independence). From value-based care provider contracts to patient-centered technologies like Quil, we’ve always been proud to promote fresh thinking and new approaches to problems.

A Glimpse Inside an Innovation Session

I’ve had the opportunity to participate in many innovation sessions during my tenure at Independence. It’s an incredible experience to sit down with a group of people that you may not work with every day to solve an internal problem, or one that our members face. One of the most memorable innovation sessions I attended was one where we mapped out the member’s experience navigating our member website.

We developed solutions that would simplify the experience. For example, we thought members would have a smoother experience if they found their most recent claims on the homepage, instead of clicking through multiple pages to get there. This is a feature you’ll see today on the site.

Philadelphia Gas Works and the YMCA Innovate to Improve Community Relationships

One of my clients, Philadelphia Gas Works (PGW), was looking to improve its community service reputation and wanted ideas on how they could be a better corporate citizen. Twenty-five employees from various PGW departments visited our Center for Innovation for a one-and-a-half day working session. Participants completed scoping exercises with PGW’s director of community affairs to understand the service work PGW is currently doing in the community and to discuss ideas for future projects. They also examined similar projects that other companies are doing.

From this session, the PGW team came up with the idea to build a volunteer program within the organization, to pilot paid volunteer time for employees, and encourage associates to wear PGW-branded clothing when performing service work out in the community.

“I find it unbelievable that Independence allows its employees to freely give of their time and expertise to clients without charge. I especially wanted to extend my gratitude and thanks to the innovation team for accomplishing something in one afternoon that would have taken us months to create. You’re amazing and very talented. You make learning fun! Thank you.” – Charles Grant, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Labor Relations & Corporate Communications, PGW

The innovation team recently hosted a similar session for the YMCA to help solve its membership retention challenge. Watch their experience:

Opening Our New Doors

Recently, we took it to another level when we opened the new Independence Blue Cross Center for Innovation at Independence Blue Cross headquarters at 1901 Market Street in Philadelphia. While the Center’s former location at 1700 Market Street served us well, the new location allows us the freedom to create a more modern design and use state-of-the-art technology to foster collaboration and encourage creative thinking.

The center is open to the community, members, customers, employees, health care professionals, and other partners in innovative projects. We offer consulting services and on-site workshops from a team of innovation experts to help solve business challenges, improve employee and customer experiences, and shift the mindset and culture of your organization.

“Our new center allows the innovation team to help solve sticky problems in health care and beyond. Our goal is to create sustainable solutions that make our community a better place to live, work, and play. I love taking a mess and making sense of it while giving people new tools and frameworks to get creative!” – Michelle Histand, IBX Director of Innovation

Come Visit Us!

For more information about the new Independence Center for Innovation, or to schedule an innovation session, visit, reach out to your Independence account executive, or contact the Innovation team.


Keith Edwards

As a Senior Account Executive for Independence Blue Cross, Keith is the lead sales representative for his accounts and is responsible for driving a consultative relationship with the key contacts for his accounts. He serves as the point of contact regarding benefit summary design, as well as reporting and trends on benefit utilization, and information on new product offerings or initiatives aligned to the goals of his various accounts. Keith also guides his accounts through the renewal process and coordinates open enrollments as well as any onsite presentations that may occur throughout the year.