Martin Kaplan, director of the Norman Lear Center, with Warren Bennis, CCLP Distinguished Fellow.
USC Annenberg.

Norman Lear Center to encourage TV shows to talk about Affordable Care Act

USC Annenberg’s Norman Lear Center recently received an 18-month, $500,000 grant for the Hollywood Health & Society program to encourage television writers and producers to incorporate information about the Affordable Care Act into show plot lines.

According to a story on Nov. 4 from The Associated Press, around 16 percent of Americans are uninsured and know very little information about the health care reform, if at all. The goal is to create narratives on television that persuade key demographic groups, such as young people and Hispanics, to enroll.

“We know from research that when people watch entertainment television, even if they know its fiction, they tend to believe that the factual stuff is actually factual,” said Norman Lear Center Director Martin Kaplan.

The grant money, provided by the California Endowment, will go towards speaking with the staff of television shows and tracking the depictions of the health care law on prime time and Spanish-language television. The story also appeared on ABC News, the Washington Post and the Huffington Post. KPCC's Take Two talked about the grant and plan to incorporate information into television narratives, as well.

Read more about the program and grant here.