Home > Employee Benefits > Survey finds deep divisions on reform and budget cuts

Survey finds deep divisions on reform and budget cuts

A recent survey of 1,502 Americans by the non-partisan Kaiser Family Foundation finds increasing support for specific parts of health care reform, but also divisions or outright opposition to other components. Some of the key findings:

  • 62% of Americans oppose withholding funding for implementation of health reform, the primary tactic that House Republicans are now using, while 33% support that approach.
  • 85% support closing the Medicare part D prescription drug “doughnut hole”
  • 79% support subsidies for people between 113% and 400% of the Federal Poverty level to purchase coverage
  • 67% support Medicaid expansion

The last three items all come at a cost, obviously, so the question remains, how do we control government spending on health reform if that is a concern to the public?

One  interesting finding from the survey concerns the individual mandate that two Federal judges have deemed unconstitutional (while two have judged it within the powers granted to Congress). On the surface, 76% of respondents opposed the mandate, but when told that without this provision that insurers could deny coverage for pre-existing conditions, opposition plummets to 47%. Conversely, when respondents were told that people would be required to buy insurance even if they think it’s too expensive or don’t want coverage because they are healthy, opposition goes up to 85%.

In addition, the survey asked Americans what parts of Federal government spending should not be reduced, moderately reduced or subject to major reductions. Entitlement programs continue to receive significant support, although they make up a sizeable part of the budget, while foreign aid, at less than 1% of the budget, was the most popular item for reductions. Meanwhile, deep divisions remain over expansion of insurance under health reform:

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William Gallagher Associates is a leading provider of insurance brokerage, risk management and employee benefits services to firms with complex risks and dynamic needs, within industries that include technology, life sciences, financial risks, health care, renewable energy & clean technology, and environmental services. WGA has offices in Boston, MA; New York, NY; Hartford, CT; Princeton, NJ; Columbia, MD; and Atlanta, GA.

  1. Philip Edmundson
    March 1, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    President Obama offered this week to amend certain key provisions, including the individual mandate, if states allowed for other means of reaching a goal of decreasing the number of uninsured.
    Time will tell whether this represents a true policy breakthrough or just an attempt to look willing to be moderate.
    It certainly raises the profile of Republican Senator Scott Brown who proposed it along with Democcrat Ron Wyden.

  2. United HealthCare Medicare Changes
    September 18, 2011 at 3:13 am

    This clearly depicts what people wants. The budget cut shouldn’t really be on medicare, social security and education. There are more options that can be explored where a cut wouldn’t do as much impact than if it is on medicare.

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