Health Insurance In New York State

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is here to stay, and that means almost everyone has the right to health insurance now. But that doesn’t mean getting it is simple, especially for people who’ve never had it before, or who face literacy or language barriers.

To help the thousands of people in NY State who still don’t have health insurance make their way through this complex process, CUP worked with Community Health Advocates (CHA, a program of the Community Service Society), designers Other Means, and illustrator Tim Lahan to create Figuring Out Health Insurance. This issue of Making Policy Public illustrates how health insurance works, basic rights under the ACA, and how to get insurance—including reduced price programs.

CHA launched Figuring Out Health Insurance at a meeting of professional health care advocates, just before the start of the 2015 open enrollment period. Advocates who work with individuals needing help with insurance will give out the poster to people throughout all of NY State.

Resources & Links

Community Health Advocates (CHA), a program of the Community Service Society of New York, helps New Yorkers navigate the complex health care system by providing individual assistance and public outreach and education to communities throughout New York State.

Other Means is a graphic design studio in New York City that works with clients in the cultural sector designing identities, websites, exhibitions, and publications. In addition to their work with clients, they produce projects that investigate language and the relationship between design and popular culture.

Tim Lahan is an artist and illustrator living and working Pennsylvania. He won first place for the long jump in the eighth grade and failed gym class twice in high school.

Making Policy Public is a program of the Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP). CUP partners with policy advocates and graphic designers to produce foldout posters that explain complicated policy issues, like this one.

Funding Support

Support for this project was provided by the Nathan Cummings Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, A Blade of Grass, North Star Fund, and public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Special Thanks

Valeria Mogilevich, Ingrid Haftel, Oscar Nuñez, Michael Anderson, and the staff and clients at Mount Sinai R.E.A.P.: Ann Rauch, Paula Kieffer, Jenny Jaquez, Sandra Castillo, Prisilia Rigaud, Amy Wilensky, John Hawkins


  • CUP
  • Christine Gaspar
  • Mark Torrey
  • Community Health Advocates (CHA)
  • Advocacy Partner
  • Steffie Kinglake
  • Nora Chaves
  • Jessie Kavanagh
  • Elizabeth Stephens
  • Other Means
  • Designers
  • Gary Fogelson
  • Phil Lubliner
  • Ryan Waller
  • Vance Wellenstein
  • Tim Lahan
  • Illustration