Expanding Health Care Coverage

Grantee Name

Public Health Solutions

Funding Area

Expanding Health Care Coverage

Publication Date

August 2009

Grant Amount


Grant Date:

January 2008–December 2008


One key battle in addressing the number of uninsured is getting people who are eligible for public health insurance programs to enroll in them.

Another is keeping them enrolled. Involuntary disenrollment from public health insurance coverage is an ongoing problem for all beneficiaries, but is particularly problematic for Chinese non-English speakers. This grant funded a public awareness campaign to help Chinese beneficiaries recognize re-enrollment materials when they arrived in the mail, understand the materials’ importance, and continue their health insurance coverage.

Outcomes and Lessons Learned

  • Launched on May 12, 2008, with an event in the community— something Public Health Solutions was encouraged to do by Council Member Liu’s office.
  • Placed large advertisements throughout downtown Flushing. HN Media tracked residents’ exposure to the ads for Public Health Solutions. On a daily basis, more than 340,000 residents were exposed to  subway ads, 785,000 to bus stop ads, and 2,500 to storefronts.
  • Placed ads in two local newspapers—Sing Tao and World Journal. Weekly circulation rates for these two papers are 50,000 and 81,000 respectively. The ad campaign lasted through the end of November 2008.
  • Distributed 5,000 handouts with the campaign message at doctors’ offices, health clinics, libraries, food pantries, corner stores, mental health and drug abuse treatment centers, and other venues in the Flushing community.
  • Produced and Disseminated an additional 2,500 brochures with information in Chinese about Public Health Solutions’ health insurance enrollment services within the community as part of the educational and outreach strategy of the campaign.
  • Linked people who saw the ads with a trained, Chinese-speaking health insurance enroller who could answer questions for public insurance beneficiaries in Flushing via The Renewal Assistance Hotline.
  • More than 1,600 public health insurance beneficiaries in Flushing renewed their coverage, representing a 65% increase over renewals during the prior year and more than 400 more renewals than they expected as a result of the project.

Read the report associated with this grant, “An Assessment of New York Health Foundation 2007 Health Insurance Coverage Grants.”