Most Americans unaware ObamaCare launches next week, poll finds

Most Americans don't know that ObamaCare's new insurance marketplaces are set to open next week, according to a new poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

In Kaiser's latest tracking poll, 64 percent of respondents didn't know when the law's new insurance marketplaces open. Fifteen percent knew the correct date — Oct. 1 — while another 20 percent chose specific but incorrect dates.

The results are another reminder of the difficult task the White House is facing as it embarks on a six-month campaign to encourage people to sign up for insurance — or at least take a look at their options.

The poll found even less awareness of the new marketplaces among the uninsured Americans who stand to benefit most from the healthcare law. Among uninsured respondents, 74 percent did not know when the exchanges launch, compared with 12 percent who knew they are set to come online Oct. 1.

Awareness of the law's key provisions has also fallen since it first passed, in 2010. In the latest Kaiser survey, 59 percent were aware that the Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to cover people with pre-existing conditions — one of the provisions that gets the most attention from Obama.

Sixty-three percent knew the law provides subsidies to help low-income households cover the cost of their premiums — a 12-point drop since 2010.

By far the most widely recognized provision was the law's unpopular individual mandate. Seventy-nine percent were aware of that provision — an increase from 2010.

And as knowledge of the law's real contents has fallen, misinformation has lingered. More than half — 52 percent — of those surveyed in the Kaiser poll believe the healthcare law creates a new government-run insurance plan, which it does not.

Overall, public opinion of the healthcare law remained divided and negative. Forty-three percent have an unfavorable view of the law, compared with 39 percent who have a favorable view.

Democrats, though, have grown more enthusiastic as the Oct. 1 launch date has gotten closer. Democrats' support for the law climbed eight points in September, rising to 67 percent.