Our January 2012 course at the Rhode Island School of Design asks the questions, “How can complex public policy
such as the Healthcare Reform Act be communicated to the public? How can we help citizens inform themselves so that
they can make informed assessments and judgments?” Bringing their diverse visual and conceptual skills, students will
experiment with effective ways of translating a written legislative document into effective visual and graphic design that
makes the information clear, accessible and understandable.
Images from our class are here. Course designed and taught by Lindsay Kinkade

Coverage, Think of It As Hats.

In 2014, the Health Insurance Exchange is coming to Rhode Island. Are you ready? If you are like the majority of Rhode Island residents, probably not. Upon researching the Health Insurance Exchange, I found that information about the Exchange was either worded in a complex, technical manner or extremely vague. I needed to find an easier way to communicate this health care entity so it can be easily understood by the people of Rhode Island.

The Health Insurance Exchange will be an online marketplace where individuals and small businesses can easily compare and purchase insurance plans. Because the appearance of the Exchange in undecided at the moment, I decided to take full advantage of this and represent the Exchange by knitted hats.

Each knitted hat represents an insurance plan for a different type of person. The more elaborate hats represent plans with more coverage and the simpler hats represent the more basic coverage plans. To start the health care discussion, each hat would be accompanied by an informational booklet that explains important facts about the Health Insurance Exchange and also a timeline explaining key events in health care reform. The hat owner has the opportunity to create their own knitted hat by either joining a knitting club or starting their own with friends and family. Here, the discussion about health care starts and the public can become more informed about these important changes.

-Alaina Nuehring {anuehrin@risd.edu}

— 2 years ago