Insurance ads target Asian language community

Covered California, which projects that Asians make up 14 percent of Californians eligible for federal subsidies under the state's new affordable health care coverage, has rolled out an Asian-language advertising campaign across various media platforms.

The state's online health insurance marketplace for the federal Affordable Care Act is targeting the campaign to airwaves, billboards, online channels and print media. Census data show that half of Asians in the state speak limited English, highlighting the need to go beyond a general advertising campaign already serving English-speaking Asian communities, officials said.

“San Francisco is a heavy emphasis because it is a large market,” said Covered California spokesman Dana Howard. “Los Angeles has a large population [of Asians] but San Francisco has a higher concentration.”

Posters at transit shelters and billboards in various Asian languages will appear in early November, along with print ads for Filipinos, including Tagalog, English or a combination.

Last week, Asian TV spots aired in Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean, Vietnamese and Tagalog. Local stations include KTSF, KCNS, ICN and Saigon TV. Earlier this month, print ads in traditional and simplified Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese appeared, and radio spots started Oct. 1 when enrollment opened for health care coverage starting Jan. 1.

Regarding efforts to make the CoveredCA.com website available in Asian languages, Howard said: “There will be, but not at this time.”

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