Sunday, October 6, 2013

Infographics to help explain Open Enrollment

Thrilling to see the enthusiasm and determination to access information and enroll in ACA - Obama Care.  I am purposefully and proudly using those two words together in spite of the painfully tortured efforts of some to keep the public in the dark about the fat that they are the same thing. 

In addition to all the states creating everything from singing TV ads to their own online calculators to help consumers prepare for and better understand open enrollment, there is a new generation of "info-graphics". This one below is from Kaiser Family Foundation.
KFF produced, one of the very best white board videos explaining ACA for consumers that I've seen - "The Youtoons Get Ready for Obamacare"

I really like some of what info-graphics are trying to do.  And this one is clearly trying to tell a story about how ACA is going to make getting health insurance more affordable than it has been.

I'm interested in getting your opinions about the elements of this graphic that could be changed or improved to guarantee better access to low literacy and low health literacy ( or insurance literacy) consumers.

It might be nice to share our thoughts with the Kaiser folks who have done so much great work to improve accessibility of healthcare and patient understanding. 

On the List, I'd put:

   a reading table literacy issue - you have to know to read down the left and across
   a financial literacy issues - no something about what a tax credit is and how it works.  In other words, do you pay upfront and get reimbursed after taxes? 
Thanks as always. 


  1. The Kaiser graphic is really great - The subsidy issue is a bit confusing, I have to admit I'm not totally sure what it means myself. I've always assumed it meant you would get reimbursed with a tax refund at the beginning of the year, but I bet a lot of people think it means an automatic discount. The poverty level percentages are a little strange too - maybe the actually poverty level number should be displayed so maybe know what to compare themselves too.

    I found that the Subsidy calculator ( on the Kaiser website really helpful as well.

  2. I agree with thesurfacing that the subsidy issue needs to be broken down even further in order to be properly understood. I especially think it would be important to stress somewhere that the ACA is not only for the disenfranchised, but to those that already have insurance, and may benefit from the new system. I only learned of this after digging around

  3. This is still not completely understandable to those who are unaware of what the Affordable Care Act is and how it benefits them. Though the visuals provide a good picture of what type of family can benefit from what, the actual information can be a bit too much for someone of low health literacy. However the calculator is helpful.

  4. I agree with thesurfacing and Martin on the subsidy issue, but I also think that the insurance literacy is somewhat high for those who have low health literacy. The other issue I have with this market exchange as seen on the graph is that there is risk selection involved on the market place, those who are deemed as high risk, in this case the smoker pays more than all the others. This is not striking, but the premium paid for the two retired couple is somewhat low if you consider them to be in the high risk category. They will become a moral hazard to the system because they will use the services more.

  5. I do agree with my classmates that the subsidy issue still could be broken down even further to ensure that it could be properly understood by everyone especially someone with low health literacy.In Addition, I think that the ACA should also incorporate a section for someone who already has insurance but would like to purchase additional insurance for themselves and their family. On the other hand. I think that Kaiser graphics were very good in terms of displaying what type of plan someone could benefit from. However, what happens if someone who is retired and smokes, Would that mean they would have to pay more month? It is still a bit confusing and needs to be broken down more. But the calculator is helpful.