Poll: Few uninsured have heard about ObamaCare exchanges

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The health insurance marketplaces are the centerpiece of the Affordable Care Act, and their success is vital to the law's mission of providing coverage to the uninsured.

The exchanges will operate by offering patients a range of plans at different price points and allowing them to comparison shop.

Many lower-income people will be eligible for tax subsides to help them purchase coverage, and this assistance will be integrated into the enrollment system.

Past polls have suggested that the public is largely ignorant about ObamaCare. A KFF survey from April found that four in 10 were not aware the reform is still law and being implemented.

These factors pose a challenge to supporters of the law over the next six months as they prepare for the start of enrollment.

In one piece of good news for the Obama administration, more than seven in 10 younger adults told the KFF that having health insurance is "very important." A similar number said that coverage is worth the money it costs.

Participation from young people in the exchanges will be crucial in balancing out enrollment by older, sicker patients.

The nonprofit group Enroll America launched a massive grassroots campaign this week that promises 50 events in 18 states. Similar efforts by the administration are in the works.

Enroll America President Anne Filipic said that 78 percent of the uninsured don't know about their new coverage options.

"We'll be engaging Americans in their homes and communities," Filipic said on a conference call Tuesday.

According to the Kaiser poll, the people who have heard most about the new insurance exchanges are the insured and people making $90,000 or more — not the target audience for the exchanges.

The survey also found that a plurality (40 percent) believe the United States will be worse off under ObamaCare, though 40 percent said the law will not affect them personally.

Negative views of the law have continued to grow since March, reaching 43 percent unfavorable to 35 favorable this month.