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Boca Raton News


Date ArticleType
6/28/2021 General
Florida Blue extends support to Surfside community

Blue Cross Blue Shield plan donates $50,000 to Operation Helping Hands, offers free 24/7 bilingual emotional support helpline


MIAMI – June 26, 2021 – Florida Blue, the local Blue Cross Blue Shield plan, is offering additional support to the residents of Surfside and the entire South Florida community following Thursday’s tragic building collapse.


The Florida Blue Foundation has contributed $50,000 to Operation Helping Hands, a response and relief fund activated by United Way of Miami-Dade and the Miami Herald/el Nuevo Herald. The funds will provide support and assistance to affected families with their short- and long-term needs created by the unexpected tragedy.


“The Surfside community suffered an unimaginable tragedy on Thursday. As search and rescue efforts continue, our hearts go out to all of those impacted as they grapple with uncertainty and grief,” said Florida Blue President & CEO Pat Geraghty. “The impact of this tragedy has rippled across the South Florida community, and our Florida Blue family is here to offer support, counseling and resources to help during this difficult time.”


Immediately following Thursday morning’s events, Florida Blue, in partnership with New Directions Behavioral Health, also activated its free emotional support helpline for all South Florida residents. The bilingual helpline is open 24-hours a day to all Floridians at no cost and will connect callers with specially trained behavioral health counselors who can assist anyone experiencing feelings of stress, anxiety, trauma and grief and in need of immediate support.


24-Hour Toll-Free Helpline

Free Bilingual Emotional Support



Licensed clinicians are available to speak with all Floridians in both English and Spanish, free of charge, including those who do not have insurance or have coverage with another health plan. Florida Blue will keep the helpline available as long as needed.


Florida Blue Centers across South Florida are also staffed by community specialists who can provide additional support to members of the community impacted by Thursday’s building collapse such as helping identify ongoing emotional support options, resources to assist with house and transportation and other social support needs.  Virtual support is available by calling the North Miami center at (786) 541-0602 or find a nearby Florida Blue Center at FloridaBlue.com. 



About Florida Blue

Florida Blue, Florida’s Blue Cross and Blue Shield company, has been providing health insurance to residents of Florida for more than 75 years. Driven by its mission of helping people and communities achieve better health, the company serves more than 5 million health care members across the state. In total, Florida Blue and its affiliated companies serve more than 28 million people in 45 states. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., it is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.