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Thomson Reuters Survey: Americans Skeptical that Healthcare Reform Will Improve Quality or Affordability
Date:8/25/2009

  • Majority Satisfied with Status Quo: The survey asked respondents to rate their satisfaction with their healthcare providers, costs, and insurance coverage. About 80 percent said they were satisfied with their doctor, nearly 70 percent were satisfied with their health insurance coverage, and about 53 percent were satisfied with the amount they pay out-of-pocket for healthcare.

  • Willing to Bear a Tax Increase: About 58 percent said they are willing to bear a tax increase (1 percent or more) to support healthcare reform.

  • Demographics Matter in Healthcare Debate: An analysis of the survey results based on respondents' age, gender, income and education found that only three demographic segments provided majority support for the provision that all Americans be required to have health insurance: those under 35, those earning less than $50,000 annually, and women. Meanwhile, the senior population, compared with other segments, showed a greater satisfaction with their healthcare providers and costs and a greater resistance to reform.

"It's easy to see why there is considerable disagreement about healthcare reform. People are generally satisfied with what they have, skeptical that change will improve the system, and divided on the role the government should play," said Gary Pickens, chief research officer for the Healthcare & Science business of Thomson Reuters and lead author of the study. "And we're seeing wide variance of opinion across demographic profiles, suggesting it will continue to be challenging for legislators to find the middle ground."

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