PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island is launching an effort to raise the profile of its Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act health insurance exchange.
Christine Ferguson, director of the state-run health benefits exchange, said Monday the outreach campaign will include presentations to businesses, community groups and consumers in all 39 of Rhode Island’s cities and towns and also will feature radio and TV ads and other promotions.
The exchange has set aside a minimum of $2 million through March for advertising, exchange spokesman Ian Lang said.
Surveys found that only about 20 percent of people in Rhode Island know about the exchange, which Lang said is comparable with national numbers.
“We’re really going to be ramping up our presence,” he said.
Most Americans will be required to have health insurance as of Jan. 1, 2014, under PPACA. The law, often referred to as Obamacare, provides subsidies to many people to help pay for it and penalizes those who don’t get it.
In Rhode Island, individuals and small businesses will be able to compare and buy coverage on the exchange. Ferguson said she expects that 70,000 to 100,000 people will get coverage through it during the first 18 months.