(Bloomberg) — Two health care startups will work with the White House to boost the number of Americans who obtain insurance through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) public exchange system.
The push comes in the final week of the open enrollment period where consumers can purchase health insurance with coverage beginning on Jan. 1. The White House says that about 10.5 million uninsured Americans are eligible for exchange plan subsidies but haven’t purchased coverage.
The White House has had help promoting the PPACA exchanges in the past from digital media companies like Funny or Die, which filmed a mock interview with the president and comedian Zach Galifianakis that drove tens of millions of viewers to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) exchange enrollment website, HealthCare.gov. Large insurers and non-profit groups have also promoted the exchanges.
During a conference call last month, President Obama said government data showed six in 10 people didn’t know that tax credits were available to help them purchase health insurance. He also warned enrollment efforts would suffer from diminishing media coverage in the third year of the program.
ZocDoc, which allows users to book medical appointments online, is planning to target its customers who previously paid cash for medical services or indicated they don’t have insurance with e-mails letting them know that they can enroll in a PPACA exchange plan.
The company’s website also will include a banner advertisement on its homepage directing users to healthcare.gov, the federal website where consumers can purchase insurance, according to chief executive officer Oliver Kharraz.