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Register of the California Blue Shield Papers, 1967-1972.
MSS 72-6  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Corporate History
  • Scope and Content

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: California Blue Shield Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1967-1972.
    Collection number: MSS 72-6
    Creator: California Blue Shield
    Extent: 1 box
    Repository: University of California, San Francisco. Library. Archives and Special Collections.
    San Francisco, California 94143-0840
    Shelf location: For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information


    Restricted: "Sole property of Dr. Link; not to be opened or utilized without the express, written consent of the authors, their assigns or heirs, or the University Librarian, UCSF."

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], California Blue Shield Papers, MSS 72-6, Archives & Special Collections, UCSF Library & CKM

    Corporate History

    California Blue Shield, the first statewide, doctor-sponsored prepaid health plan in the nation, was formed on February 2, 1939 as California Physicians' Service, with funding authorized and advanced by the California Medical Association. It was sponsored, but not owned by the CMA, with its basic policies set and controlled via the administrative membership (the house of delegates of the California Medical Association). According to a 1969 publication titled The Shield, the "Blue Shield" name was born in the early 1940s in Buffalo, New York, where the manager of the non-profit physicians' service chose it as a companion to the name that identified hospital services, Blue Cross. The name gradually gained recognition across the country, and in 1946, the national association was formed, formally adopting the name Blue Shield as signifying the prepayment of physicians' services on a non-profit basis under medical sponsorship. Although to this day the corporate name is still California Physicians' Service, the service name, identifying the services performed, is California Blue Shield. California Blue Shield has offices in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

    Scope and Content

    The California Blue Shield publications in this collection --primarily newsletters, but also an annual report and an issue of the house organ from the organization's thirtieth anniversary year --were created and distributed as part of California Blue Shield's ongoing relations with physicians involved in this program. Masthead for the Blue Shield Bulletin states "Sent to: CMA Councilors, Delegates and Staff; County Medical Society Officers and Executive Secretaries; Blue Shield Trustees, former Trustees, Management and Field Personnel." These publications were evidently collected by Dr. J. B. deC. M. Saunders, first chancellor at UCSF.