include well-specified criteria, she said. Criteria that are used to gauge progress in a study may be adopted as benchmarks that are internalized within organizations or plans. These criteria could relate to aspects of navigation, to reenrollment, or to ease of reading and literacy-related issues.

Isham concluded the session by highlighting some of the points made during the discussion period, including

•  The need to acknowledge the cognitive load facing consumers as they make complex choices through health insurance exchanges;

•  The applicability of the Plain Language Act to the operations of the exchanges;

•  The importance of meeting the needs of the diverse populations seeking assistance through the exchanges;

•  The importance of transparency and ensuring accountability of the exchanges in terms of their customer performance; and

•  The necessity of learning from government programs that have experience and have succeeded in helping customers, such as Medicare beneficiaries learning of their insurance options.


Corlette, S. 2011. Lessons learned from currently operating health exchanges. PowerPoint presentation at the Institute of Medicine Workshop on Facilitating State Health Exchange Communication Through the Use of Health Literate Practices. Washington, DC.

Corlette, S., J. Alker, J. Touschner, and J. Volk. 2011. The Massachusetts and Utah health insurance exchanges: Lessons learned. Washington, DC.

IOM (Institute of Medicine). 2011. Health literacy implications for health care reform: Workshop summary. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

Sommers, B. D., and S. Rosenbaum. 2011. Issues in health reform: How changes in eligibility may move millions back and forth between Medicaid and insurance exchanges. Health Affairs 30(2):1-9.

Weiss, A. M., and L. Grossman. 2011. Paving an enrollment superhighway: Bridging state gaps between 2014 and today. Washington, DC: National Academy for State Health Policy.

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