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Outreach Army Reaches 9,300 with Health Care Info

Health insurance “navigators” from 21 community organizations were out in force on Monday, December 9, at 13 CTA elevated stations, doing what they’ve done nearly every day for the last two months – informing residents of the Affordable Care Act and how they can benefit from enrolling in it.

By the first week in December, the navigators – working in 24 neighborhoods through LISC Chicago’s Healthy Communities Campaign – had contacted more than 8,300 residents at 180 outreach events. They connected with another 1,000 people by knocking on doors and through one-on-one meetings at neighborhood-based organizations that assist residents in the application process. (Update: By Jan. 10, 2014, the number of people reached had exceeded 14,000.)

LISC and partners are using a cloud-based data collection tool, called Wufoo, to track their work and capture information about the people they are reaching. The data, as of early December, showed that:

  • Half of those who provided age information are the "young invincibles,” ages 19 to 34, whose participation in ACA is essential because they are less likely to need medical care.
  • Forty-three percent of events have been conducted partially or completely in Spanish, to better reach Chicago's large Latino population.
  • Texting is a preferred mode of communication for 30 percent of those asked, opening a new mode of communication that has been underused in the past.
  • About 10 percent are open to email followup, which indicates a lower level of internet usage compared to mobile phones.

Ninety people had completed applications by early December, beating the December 23 deadline for coverage that begins on Jan. 1, 2013. Enrollment efforts will continue through the end of March, 2013, when enrollment will close until later in 2014.

See photos of the navigators on Flickr, and a new set of photos from the Montrose stop on the Brown Line. All photos by Gordon Walek.

For more information, contact LISC program officer Dominique Williams,, 312-422-9571.

Outreach "navigators" gathered at a training in early December to update each other on their work across 24 neighborhoods.

Gordon Walek



Posted in Health


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Local Initiatives Support Corporation Chicago connects neighborhoods to the resources they need to become stronger and healthier.

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