Access Better Coverage, despite being user-friendly and visually pleasing, is recommended with reservations. The site's navigation is subpar, and the lack of dates on the website itself raises alarms regarding the information's currency (some reports cited are by this point outdate). However, consumers who seek basic introductions to the most important aspects of health insurance may find the relevant videos and articles very useful.
Access Better Coverage offers a pleasant visual experience. Readable font, professional graphics, and a bold color scheme combine to create what most users will recognize as a well-designed, contemporary website. Pages on Access Better Coverage load quickly despite being populated with engaging visuals and videos.
From the homepage, users can easily access the site's three main content tabs-"The Basics," "By the Numbers," and "Get the Latest." By scrolling down the page, visitors can see those same categories expanded with options to "Learn More" about a few of the major subcategories.
The site's visual design, unfortunately, is not enough to make up for its lackluster and often frustrating user-experience. The way that information is organized appears fairly straightforward; however, for a site with a fairly limited amount of information, the few content headings occasionally do not logically match the information contained within them.
For instance, under "The Basics," included alongside "Health Insurance 101," "Coverage Classroom," "Insurance Basics" (which contains the same information found in "Health Insurance 101"), and a glossary is a link to "Patient Profiles." These profiles highlight hypothetical patients and their healthcare situations on a disorderly web page with overlapping information and a background that changes color/design as users scroll down. The effect is disorienting and off-putting, let alone the fact that it may not be relevant for readers to learn about a hypothetical patient with a specified income/disease compared to learning about their own unique circumstances.
In short, the site's flashy visuals appears to mask a rather convoluted design. While the writing here is easy to see and read, Access Better Coverage provides generic information that spends more time constructing hypothetical situations rather than allowing users to learn how to work within the confines of their own unique needs. More effort could be put into helping users better understand where to find the information they need and how to evaluate the plan given their particular financial/health situations.
Access Better Coverage doesn't include dates of publication or revision on its web pages or its .pdf publications, so assessing the site's currency is difficult. The general nature of the health insurance information is unlikely to go out of date-even in today's rapidly changing insurance landscape-as the material here is more geared toward explaining what insurance is, how to use it, how it changes depending on finances/health, etc.
The site does feature a blog section, although the most recent post is from October 2016. Combined with the fact that the website has no copyright date published for users to see, there are red flags regarding how current the information is on Access Better Coverage.
The site's health insurance content is, fortunately, aligned with current thinking in the field. The website provides consumers with some concise, educational resources that prepare them for navigating insurance enrollment periods, making more informed decisions about their health care. For example, a downloadable report from 2014 titled "An Analysis of Exchange Plan Benefits for Certain Medicines" gives users hard data (as well as reader-friendly summaries) regarding the Affordable Care Act's effort to address impractical drug cost-sharing. Although the data itself is slightly outdated, the basic framework does give readers an in-depth look at this issue.
The three main topic areas on Access Better Coverage include teaching consumers about health insurance coverage, understanding insurance jargon, and providing tips on how to best select health insurance coverage for families. In addition to the text-based articles, users will appreciate the site's collection of entertaining videos, each less than a few minutes long to emphasize concision. A video titled "Improve Access to Important Clinical Information" gives an overview of how to engage and empower consumers in the healthcare process, incorporating visually pleasing graphics and a concise, engaging script. Visitors can access the site's materials in Spanish as well.
There is a good deal of consumer-friendly information on this website. It will especially help those who have little to no understanding of the field of health insurance, or those who want state-specific resources to help them most effectively navigate it. Users can learn about deductibles, cost-sharing, prescription drug coverage, enrollment periods, and much more. Additionally, included on the site are various scientific references to that users can explore in more depth, as well as fact sheets that detail popular healthcare plans across the nation.
Unfortunately, with the state of U.S. health care being such a precarious situation-including proposals to repeal the Affordable Care Act-and this website's failure to provide dates on its materials, users may find themselves reading about healthcare plans and strategies that no longer exist.