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Health care reform and 2008 elections: New reports examine candidates' plans, public's views
Date:1/15/2008

January 15, 2008, New York, NYEighty-one percent of Americans believe that in order to help reach the goal of health insurance for all, employers should either provide health insurance to their workers or contribute to the cost of their coverage, according to survey data released today by The Commonwealth Fund. Nearly nine of 10 (88%) Democrats, nearly three-quarters (73%) of Republicans, and nearly four of five (79%) Independents would support such an employer play or pay requirement.

In addition, the survey, conducted between June and October of 2007, found that a wide majority of Democratic (67%), Republican (66%), and Independent (70%) voters believe that health insurance costs should be shared by individuals, employers and the government. Further, a majority of the public was strongly or somewhat in favor of requiring individuals to have health insurance coveragewith government help for those who cannot afford it. Sixty-eight percent of Americans favor such a proposal, with 80 percent of Democrats in support, and more than half of Republicans (52%) and two-thirds of Independents (68%) in favor, according to a report on the survey findings, The Publics Views on Health Care Reform in the 2008 Presidential Election.

The Commonwealth Fund today also released a report that describes and evaluates the Presidential candidates health reform plans. The analysis found that both leading Democratic and Republican candidates seek to expand health coverage through the private insurance market, but the leading Democratic candidates would require employers to continue participating in the health insurance system either by providing coverage directly or contributing to the cost of their employees coverage, whereas the Republicans support changes in the tax code that have the potential to significantly reduce the role of employers in the provision and financing of health insurance.

In some ways, the Republican proposals seek bigger changes t
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Contact: Mary Mahon
mm@cmwf.org
212-606-3853
Commonwealth Fund
Source:Eurekalert

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