Ready, Set, Enroll: What Every Health Organization Should Know About ACA Public Education and Engagement


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With just two and a half months until the new health insurance marketplaces open for business, many organizations are still struggling with how and whether they need to educate their employees, patients and customers about the health law.

Whether you work for a hospital system with uninsured patients under your care, a patient group representing Americans with costly medical conditions, or an employer who must provide coverage by 2015, it’s time to build a strategic communications and engagement plan for the rollout.

Expert panel includes:
- Michael Freeman, Executive Vice President, Healthcare Leadership Council
- Ginette Magana, National Partner Engagement Director, Enroll America
- Jeff Oldham, Managing Director, SevenTwenty Strategies
- Vlad Cartwright, Executive Vice President, SevenTwenty Strategies

Published in: Economy & Finance, Business
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Ready, Set, Enroll: What Every Health Organization Should Know About ACA Public Education and Engagement

  1. 1. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Introductions Michael Freeman Executive Vice President, Healthcare Leadership Council Ginette Magana National Partner Engagement Director, Enroll America Vlad Cartwright Executive Vice President, SevenTwenty Strategies Jeff Oldham Managing Director, SevenTwenty Strategies
  2. 2. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Framing the Discussion Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) 29 million Americans are slated to obtain private coverage through health insurance exchanges by 2019. 12 million are expected to gain coverage through Medicaid and CHIP programs. With the upcoming deadline for implementing the Affordable Care Act (ACA), many organizations and individuals with a vested interest in its success, are struggling with ensuring that the program will be accepted and supported by the general public. BLUEPRINT Look no further than the pharmaceutical industry's ongoing campaign to ensure continued public support and participation in and around the Medicare Part D program.
  3. 3. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Learn From The Past Draw on the federal government's successful launch of Medicare Part D, a major national health coverage program that became law in December 2003. Part D encountered significant technical, educational and coordination challenges at its outset, but eight years later, the public views the program as a success. Not unlike ACA, The Medicare Modernization Act (MMA) was passed in a highly volatile, politically polarizing and partisan fashion. CHALLENGES Educating their target audience (seniors) about the new benefit. Assisting them in enrolling during date specific periods. Conveying their approval for the program to the general public and most importantly, their elected officials and the media at large.
  4. 4. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Solutions TACTICS USED Measure sentiment/research/test messages. Implement a robust public outreach and education campaign partnering with trusted, community-based organizations to ensure enrollment. Conduct an aggressive national paid and earned media campaign to ensure ongoing public support. Work with HHS & other agencies to create a simple yet comprehensive web portal that seniors could use to enroll. Continued, ongoing educational efforts to generate support.
  5. 5. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR From Past To Present How will we overcome our current challenges? With ACA's initial enrollment period on the horizon, those with a vested interested in its success would do well to emulate the pharmaceutical industry's strategies for a successful rollout.
  6. 6. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Connecting Uninsured Americans with Health Coverage The 2013-2014 Opportunity
  7. 7. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Contents Enroll America’s Mission Messaging to Reach Uninsured Americans Get Covered America Campaign
  8. 8. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Mission: Maximize coverage for uninsured Americans 1. Educate and Engage 2. Mobilize to Enroll 3. Work with Partners to Ensure System works Enroll America will execute a national education and enrollment campaign Successful implementation of ACA requires all-out effort by government, not-for-profits, insurers, hospitals, community health centers, health providers, and others
  9. 9. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR One Fifth of the Uninsured Live in the Top 13 Counties and Half Live in the Top 114 Counties Uninsured by State <230K 230K - 600K 600K - 1.1M 1.1M+ Number of Uninsured CA   TX   FL   NY   IL   GA  NC  OH  PA  NJ   MI  AZ   VA   Rest  of   the  U.S.   67% of uninsured live in 13 states Source: Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, March 2011 and 2012
  10. 10. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR One Fifth of the Uninsured Live in the Top 13 Counties and Half Live in the Top 114 Counties 402K   408K   419K   434K   445K   521K   531K   657K   675K   762K   887K   1.1M   2.2M   Queens  County,  NY   Broward  County,  FL   San  Bernardino  County,  CA   Clark  County,  NV   Riverside  County,  CA   San  Diego  County,  CA   Orange  County,  CA   Maricopa  County,  AZ   Dallas  County,  TX   Miami-­‐Dade  County,  FL   Cook  County,  IL   Harris  County,  TX   Los  Angeles  County,  CA   Uninsured by County 10% of the uninsured live in just 4 counties (LA, Harris, Cook, Miami) 20% of the uninsured live in top 13 counties (Top 4 + Next 9) 50% live in the top 114 counties (3.8% of total counties in the US)
  11. 11. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR The Uninsured are a Diverse Group 12 AgeGender EthnicityIncome (as % of Poverty Level Male 53% Female 47% <138 51% 139-400 38% 19-25 17% <18 16% 26-34 21% 35-54 34% 55-64 12% 400+ 10% White 45% Latino 32% AfAm 15% Other 8% Source: Kaiser Commission on Medicaid & The Uninsured, October 2012
  12. 12. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Facts About Coverage and Financial Help Are Critical Messaging will raise awareness by highlighting 4 key facts 1.  All insurance plans will have to cover doctor’s visits, hospitalizations, maternity care, emergency room care, and prescriptions 2.  You might be able to get financial help to pay for a health insurance plan 3.  If you have a pre-existing condition, insurance plans cannot deny you coverage 4.  All insurance plans will have to show costs and what is covered in simple language 13   89% of respondents identified one of these as the most important fact to communicate Source: Enroll America, November 2012
  13. 13. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Health Insurance Marketplaces Will Offer the Coverage Option Opportunities for All Americans 14 •  Health Insurance Marketplaces open October 1, 2013, allowing consumers to purchase and enroll in health insurance, with coverage beginning January 1, 2014 •  Marketplace certify qualified health plans and provide an easy way to compare options •  Continuum of coverage: Low income Americans (<138% of Federal Poverty Level) qualify for Medicaid, Americans at 138-400% FPL qualify for the Marketplace with tax credits, and Americans above 400% FPL qualify for the Marketplace or private plans •  Average subsidy for each subsidized enrollee is $5,510* Health Coverage in 2014 Marketplace Open Oct 1 to Mar 31 Sign up on website and select coverage Coverage begins Jan 1 How to Enroll *Source: CBO, February 2013
  14. 14. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Enroll America Will Execute National Education and Enrollment Campaign Using Cutting-Edge Strategies and Tactics 15   Grassroots   Organizing   Digital  +   Social   Media   Data  &   Results   Driven   Community   Engagement   Strategic   Partners   Earned   Media   Paid  Media   Surrogates  
  15. 15. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Focus Resources in Targeted Areas Investment Decisions Based on Research and Analytics 67% of the uninsured live in 13 states and 50% live in just 114 counties *May be subject to change
  16. 16. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Campaign Driven by Guiding Principles 17 Data-driven and metrics-based Grassroots-focused Coalition-based Committed to cutting-edge online organizing and social media tactics and tools Building a narrative of success 1 2 3 4 5
  17. 17. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Get Covered America Campaign Will Target Key Audiences Uninsured Americans Influencers General Public Campaign will conduct outreach and messaging to specific groups Core Audiences
  18. 18. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Enroll America Will Work with an Array of Partners 19 Sampling of Partners Many stakeholders play a role in a successful enrollment effort, including: Retailers, consumer groups, hospitals, insurers, faith-based groups, business, labor, civic groups, community health centers, drug companies, and grassroots volunteers
  19. 19. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR 20 1. Capacity Building and Education 2. Marketplace Opens Phase 1 Enrollment 3. Coverage Begins & Phase 2 Enrollment 4. Learning and Capacity Building 5. Marketplace Opens •  Hire additional leadership, recruit volunteer leaders and increase collaboration with partners. •  Marketplace opens October 1st •  Refine Field tactics and build strong media, grassroots and partner relationships. •  Coverage begins on January 1st •  Continue large-scale enrollment push to complete first year of enrollment •  Debrief, learn lessons from past year, prepare for October •  Marketplace open from Oct. 15th to Dec. 7th •  Launch full effort w/ media, events, grassroots June-Sept ‘13 October - Dec ‘13 Jan ‘14 - March ‘14 April - Sept ‘14 Oct – Dec ‘14 Phase Dates Priorities Campaign Timeline Builds to Marketplace Openings
  22. 22. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR The Need for Effective Health Campaigns: Affordable Care Act Kaiser April poll: 58% of uninsured not sure how ACA affects them 40% of overall U.S. population not sure ACA is still law of the land Health reform law still controversial: 36% approve, 54% disapprove (CBS News poll – July 2013) Implementation problematic, confusing Some states implementing insurance exchanges, some refusing, some not sure if they can make deadline. Medicaid expansion not uniformly embraced by states. Concerns about employers ending health coverage, sending workers into health exchanges.
  23. 23. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Medicare Part D Campaign Research Mass communications – TV advertising, direct mail – do not sufficiently inform target population Potential enrollees want detailed information from a credible source Most want to hear from a doctor or pharmacist Overly simplistic messages, cute slogans considered insulting When people are spending their money, they want hard facts All outreach needed to steer clear of political persuasion
  24. 24. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Going Retail with the Campaign Medicare Today campaign Over 400 national, regional and local organizations Seniors Health providers Employers Caregivers Retail centers Faith-based groups Community organizers recruited in all 50 states
  25. 25. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Medicare Today: Lessons Learned Recruit partners who can reach all sectors of your target population Expand your reach – train the trainers Don’t make people come to you. Go to them. Grocery store and pharmacy events Senior center programs Congressional town halls Hospitals and doctor’s offices Focus on local, not national, media. Consumer-friendly “news you can use” Develop state-based news hooks Create attention-getting materials, videos
  26. 26. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Health Access America: Reaching the Uninsured Ten test cities linking uninsured with public, private coverage resources Cleveland Memphis Nashville Columbia, SC Baton Rouge Corpus Christi Saginaw Las Vegas Las Cruces, NM Raleigh, NC
  27. 27. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Evaluating the Campaign Did people sign up for the program? Over 85 percent of Medicare beneficiaries have some form of prescription drug coverage Most difficult challenge – reaching low-income seniors with information about financial assistance Monitoring through annual surveys Do you have drug coverage? Is the program making your prescriptions affordable? Is the enrollment system easy to use? Ask for specific positives, negatives
  28. 28. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Health Access America: Target Populations Segments of the population with disproportionate uninsured rates Small business owners and employees Families with children Young people Latino Americans
  29. 29. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Research Shows Health Coverage Outreach Need, Challenges Health insurance information not easily accessible 54% said they did not know of a reliable source for information about coverage 73% of families with children 66% said they weren’t likely to look for information because it would be unaffordable anyway Health insurance not an easy sell Difficult to convince people, if healthy, to spend money on something they don’t currently have Different than Medicare outreach – where value of prescription drugs for seniors is more clear
  30. 30. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Communications Research Findings Communication must come from a credible source Corporate interests instinctively distrusted. Best sources are experts without company ties. Contact must be repeated and persuasive A simple, objective just-the-facts approach doesn’t move people to act Messages about affordability have to be handled with tact Wrong language can sound patronizing, condescending
  31. 31. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Health Access America: Lessons Learned Know your environment What programs are in place? Who are leading public, private players? Is their low-income financial assistance available? Build a strong partner network Local individuals, organizations can reach more people, achieve quicker credibility than Washington, D.C. Leverage already-existing events Much energy can be wasted trying to create enrollment “events.” More sensible to piggyback on something already in place. Localize your message Local spokespeople, local verbiage , local icons. Difficult to nationalize a campaign with personal impact.
  32. 32. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Health Access America: Lessons Learned Utilize the local media Community-based media gets closer attention. National sources get glossed over. One-on-one counseling is vital On personal financial matters, large group communications set stage. Personal conversation closes the deal. Make outreach easy Small business owners, parents have little free time. Schedule events accordingly.
  33. 33. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Health Access America: Results 1,125 health insurance education events 33,122 attendees 16,405 enrollees Results underscore the importance of strategic, aggressive outreach to link uninsured Americans with coverage
  35. 35. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Learnings from Branded Efforts: Campaigns for five brands in support of Part D, Medicare Advantage, Medicaid and Special Needs Plans in support of education and enrollment Confirm the findings from Health Access America and Medicare Today efforts 41 Markets covered nationwide with diverse demographic range (age and ethnicity) Direct contact with target audience in familiar settings with trusted sources is key Critical to understand how your audiences make decisions and who can ultimately assist in influencing their decision Taking advantage of existing local events or sponsoring with local partners provides both an audience and credibility Local organizations and providers key to disseminating information (from a trusted source)
  36. 36. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Results of Branded Efforts: 2,054 events 1,200 provider partnerships Over 3,500 community and faith-based organization partnerships Millions of print materials distributed through local community and faith-based partnerships Enrollment in over 90% of target markets exceeded goals for census growth
  37. 37. ACA COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES WEBINAR Would You Like More Information? To learn more about the services offered by SevenTwenty Strategies contact Jeff Oldham 202.962.3955 This session has been recorded and will be placed at: