ACA & The New Normal

Majority of Americans Favor Public-Private Hybrid Healthcare System Over ‘Medicare For All’ That Ends Private Insurance

2020 Healthcare & Politics Report Unveils Data On Trump, Medicare & ObamaCare

58% Support Undocumented Immigrants Having Access to Health Insurance, according to a new InsuranceQuotes survey. Read the complete survey here.

AUSTIN, TEXAS (October 23, 2019)—With the Democratic primary debates for the 2020 presidential election in full swing, insuranceQuotes.com today released the results of its 2020 State of Healthcare and Politics Report. Survey data unveils Americans’ preferences, concerns and knowledge related to Medicare for All, Obamacare, the state of healthcare, Medicare’s risk of going bankrupt and healthcare access for undocumented immigrants.

According to the report, 62% of Americans “most strongly support” a U.S. healthcare system that includes both public and private insurance, while 25% favor a Medicare for All system that ends private insurance and 9% favor a system that includes only private insurance. In addition, 58% believe that undocumented immigrants should have health insurance access, while 39% believe they should not.

“Medicare For All is obviously a much-talked about proposal, with buzz and support behind it, as well as its share of questions and opposition. The data shows that if Medicare for All means that private insurance is eliminated, the American people are not currently ready for that,” said Jason Hargraves, managing editor at insuranceQuotes.com. “As the election approaches, the candidates will have to solidify their plans and then make their case.”

Among the study’s additional findings:

  • 50% of Americans say that since President Trump took office, the U.S. healthcare system has stayed about the same in quality, while 28% say worse and 18% say better
  • 43% assert that Medicare is at risk of going bankrupt in the future, while 43% assert that it is not
  • 34% are unaware that Obamacare is still in effect

The report is a follow-up to the 2019 State of Healthcare and Politics Report, released last October, which found that 41% said they do not know what healthcare open enrollment is, and 14% falsely said it was cancelled. The 2020 open enrollment period—which is the timeframe when people can enroll in a health insurance plan for 2020 coverage—runs from November 1 through December 15.

“Obamacare, Medicare and coverage for undocumented immigrants are, each in their own ways, hot button issues for the 2020 election. However, politics aside, certain realities do remain: for instance, while there have been changes to Obamacare, it is still the law of the land. And many people aren’t aware of that,” said Hargraves.

The full 2020 State of Healthcare and Politics Report—which includes additional data, insights and analysis—is available at www.insurancequotes.com/health/health-care-survey-majority-americans-support-hybrid-insurance-plans-over-medicare-for-all.

Excerpts from the Health Care Survey

Public, private or health care combo?
In the days following the October Democratic primary debate, a great deal of time and energy was spent parsing the potential viability — and messaging strength — of both Sanders’ and Warren’s respective plans to eliminate private health insurance in lieu of a Medicare for All nationwide insurance plan. And while the insuranceQuotes survey shows 25 percent of respondents support this approach, the vast majority — 62 percent — favor a mixture of public and private insurance.

According to Dr. Tarek Hassanein, professor of medicine at University of California San Diego’s School of Medicine, the survey data supports the broader perspective Americans have about wanting a more incremental approach to health insurance reform.

“We cannot go from private insurance to totally government-based insurance, knowing our attitudes toward government-run activities,” Hassanein says. “The idea that we will have both available makes a lot of sense, and it keeps public insurance competing with private.”

What’s more, Hassanein believes there are age demographic differences at play in assessing this particular point, and that voters understand the competitive value in allowing both private and public health insurance to coexist.

Current state of Medicare and the Affordable Care Act
When it comes to the financial viability of Medicare, survey respondents were equally divided, with 43 percent asserting that Medicare is “at risk of going bankrupt in the future,” while 43 percent assert that it is not.

According to Feigl-Ding, this too comes down to faulty or incomplete information.

We cannot go from private insurance to totally government-based insurance, knowing our attitudes toward government-run activities; The idea that we will have both available makes a lot of sense, and it keeps public insurance competing with private...

“Healthcare costs are skyrocketing out of control, yes, but Medicare can’t go bankrupt,” says Feigl-Ding. “Medicare is a non-discretionary budget item, which means the U.S. government has to fund it, and it can issue as much debt as it needs to. Could the U.S. theoretically default on its debt? Sure, but it never has and I don’t think there’s a risk of that happening any time soon.”

When it comes to the state of healthcare more generally — and the Affordable Care Act more specifically — this is where experts are a little more concerned.

According to the insuranceQuotes study, 50 percent of Americans say that since President Trump took office, the U.S. healthcare system has stayed about the same in quality, while 28 percent say it’s worse, and 18 percent say it’s better. What’s more, 34 percent are unaware that the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) is still in effect.

 

Read the full survey here.

 

Methodology:
This study was conducted for insuranceQuotes.com via telephone by SSRS. Interviews were conducted among a sample of 1,009 respondents from September 24-29, 2018. The margin of error for total respondents is +/-3.47% at the 95% confidence level. All data are weighted to represent the adult U.S. population.
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