Opella Ernest, MD

Opella F. Ernest MD, is the newly appointed Chief Medical Officer, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois. In this role she serves as the primary physician representative to assure effective and efficient delivery of quality medical care consistent with the mission and vision of Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC). Prior to her appointment, she served as Senior Medical Director for HCSC providing clinical leadership for the Government Programs unit formed early 2012. 

Before joining HCSC, Dr. Ernest was a SVP, Medical Management for Health-Spring Inc. She was responsible for the clinical model for Special Needs Program members (dual eligibles) and supported utilization management initiatives, quality, and pharmacy during her tenure in various roles with Health-Spring. Dr. Ernest's past positions include physician leadership roles with the Visiting Nurse Associate of Fox Valley(FQHCs), Advocate Health Care, and the Henry Ford Medical Group.

Dr. Ernest received her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She earned her doctorate from the Ohio State University College of Medicine.  She interned at St. Joseph Hospital, Chicago Illinois and completed her residency in family medicine at Providence Hospital, Southfield Michigan. Professional affiliations include the American Board of Family Medicine and American College of Physician Executives.

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