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Americans believe wounded Iraq war veterans are not receiving high quality medical care in US
Date:5/24/2008

would receive in other major U.S. hospitals. Just over one-third (36%) feel the care is worse. Americans with a family member who is serving or has served in the military have a somewhat more negative opinion of military and VA hospitals (41% believe care is worse compared to 29% of other Americans).

Compared to both remaining Democratic presidential candidates, more Americans feel that John McCain will make sure that wounded veterans returning from Iraq receive high quality health services. Fifty-three percent say McCain would be more likely to do this while 35% say Democrat Barack Obama would. Against Democrat Hillary Clinton, 46% say McCain would make sure veterans receive quality care while 37% say Clinton would. Political independents, a key swing group in the election, are more likely to believe McCain would make sure veterans receive quality care than either Democratic candidate (McCain 55% vs Obama 29%; McCain 46% vs Clinton 33%).

Providing quality health care for our soldiers in harms way here and abroad is an emotional issue for many Americans, said Humphrey Taylor, Chairman of The Harris Poll.

The high level of dissatisfaction with the health care services provided to Iraq veterans could become a significant issue in the presidential election, said Robert J. Blendon, Professor of Health Policy and Political Analysis at the Harvard School of Public Health. This issue could be particularly significant for voters who have a family connection to the military.

Methodology

This survey is part of the series, Debating Health: Election 2008. The series focuses on current health issues in the presidential campaign. The survey design team includes Professor Robert Blendon, Tami Buhr, John Benson and Kathleen Weldon of the Harvard School of Public Health; and Humphrey Taylor, Scott Hawkins and Justin Greeves of Harris Interactive.

This survey was conducted by telephone within the United States among a n
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Contact: Robin Herman
rherman@hsph.harvard.edu
617-432-4752
Harvard School of Public Health
Source:Eurekalert

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