Public Education, Outreach and Application Assistance

A medical professional helps patients fill out forms for medical insurance.

An analysis of public education and application assistance during the 2014 open enrollment period sheds light on general trends as well as promising practices used by particular states and suggestions offered by stakeholders and researchers.

The Issue:

Researchers summarize effective strategies for effective public education and enrollment assistance, including prioritizing public education about subsidies for marketplace coverage and that the legal requirement to obtain coverage was motivating for numerous consumers.

Key Findings

  • One-on-one application assistance was often essential to helping the uninsured enroll.

  • One particularly effective strategy involved brokers enrolling into individual coverage workers at companies not offering health insurance. Such firms employ 46 percent of the country’s subsidy-eligible uninsured.


Researchers concluded that continuing support for hands-on application assistance is likely to prove essential to enrolling the eligible uninsured.

About the Grantee:

The Urban Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy research and educational organization that examines the social, economic and governance problems facing the nation. For more information, visit Follow the Urban Institute on Twitter or Facebook More information specific to the Urban Institute’s Health Policy Center, its staff, and its recent research can be found at