Hurricane Katrina blew powerful winds –up to 175 mph—devastating homes, shuttering businesses—many for good—and destroying lives. The final death toll was estimated at 1,836 people.

Nearly 80 percent of New Orleans was under water following Hurricane Katrina. In some areas, the water was up to 20 feet deep. Men, women children and pets sought refuge on rooftops to wait for help.

Considered the costliest disaster in U. S. history, Katrina caused $81 billion in property damages. Estimates put the total economic impact of Hurricane Katrina at $150 billion.

Hurricane Rita blew through Texas and Louisiana with winds at nearly 120 mph, making it one of the most intense Atlantic hurricanes in history. It hit Louisiana on Sept. 24, 2005, while the state was still knee-deep in Katrina chaos. In Louisiana, Rita hit low-lying communities near the coast hardest, completely flooding a number of parishes. Rita stole 120 lives and cost over $10.5 billion.

Your health comes first. Worry about the rest later.

Your healthcare comes first. Worry about the rest later. This was the message Blue Cross sent to our customers in the frantic hours and days after Katrina. We communicated this message with both words and deeds by offering a premium grace period so customers didn't have to worry about paying their bills or losing coverage.
We relaxed network restrictions and pre-authorization requirements so customers could get the care they needed during the chaotic times following Katrina.
We continued to pay claims on behalf of our members, even when we were not receiving premium payments—and even hand delivered checks to providers in New Orleans to help keep their cash flowing.
Employees volunteered time and money and collected hundreds of pounds of food and supplies to donate to shelters and nonprofit agencies. Blue Cross donated $1 million to hurricane relief efforts within Louisiana.