Note that the phrasing is Medicare for All. If you say "government" health care, the numbers drop.
A majority of Americans support a single-payer, Medicare-for-all healthcare system, a new poll shows.
The results showed that just over 50 percent of the 1,500 likely voters surveyed indicated support for a single-payer system. Almost 80 percent of Democrats supported such a plan, while 25 of Republicans did.
The findings were first shared with The Hill by the Progressive Change Institute, an arm of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.
The new poll comes on the heels of Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin's abandoning what was seen as a trailblazing plan to create a single-payer healthcare system in his state. The move was derided by Dr. Andrew D. Coates, president of Physicians for a National Health Program, who said, "Vermonters throughout the state understand that an equitable health care system must be truly universal and must remove all financial barriers to medically necessary care. They recognize that a public single payer is an essential incremental step toward these goals."
"The time for a single-payer system is now. Our patients in every state urgently need it," Coates added.
Quality and affordability of care were generally rated as better with Medicaid coverage, while private coverage was seen as offering better access to and more respect from providers. These views represent a nuanced but reasonable comparison of Medicaid versus private health insurance and are consistent with some of the empirical evidence in this area. Recent studies indicate that Medicaid provides low-income adults with better financial protection than does private coverage, while lower reimbursement rates in Medicaid have been linked to lower physician participation rates in that program compared to private coverage. Favorable views toward Medicaid were most common among racial and ethnic minorities, people with lower education and income, and those in worse health.
Medicaid, the federal-state program for poor and disabled Americans, is a frequent political target, often described as substandard because of its restricted list of doctors and the red tape sometimes even worse than no insurance at all.
But repeated surveys show that the program is quite popular among the people who use it.
When asked to consider it alongside other big, popular government programs, Medicaid compares favorably, said Robert Blendon, a public health professor at Harvard who studies public opinion on health care issues and was a co-author on the recent study. Its only when you compare it to Medicare, which is so much more popular than 96 percent of what the federal government does, that it looks unimpressive, Mr. Blendon said.
Comment by Don McCanne od PNHP: Low-income patients strongly support the Medicaid program. It provides better financial protection than does private insurance, and they perceive the care to be of high quality. Their primary concern is that private coverage was seen as offering better access to and more respect from providers than does Medicaid.
When asked whether it was better to have Medicaid or to be uninsured, there was strong agreement that Medicaid patients have higher quality of care, have greater access to doctors, are treated with better respect, and, especially, are better able to afford the health care that they need, than are the uninsured.
In fact, according to Harvards Robert Blendon, Medicaid compares quite favorably to other popular government programs, though the support is unimpressive when compared to the support for Medicare.
Unfortunately, the politicians in many states do not seem to care. Even though the federal government would provide most of the funds, they would rather leave these people uninsured. Obviously, they could care less about the opinions of this low-income population that lacks political clout.
Why would Medicare be more popular than Medicaid? Medicare that is supplemented with Medigap, retiree plans, or Part C plans removes financial barriers to care, thus providing a similar level of financial protection as Medicaid - with the exception that Medicaid covers long term care as well. Medicaid does have the stigma of a welfare program whereas Medicare is considered to be an earned right available to all qualified by age or disability. The greatest reason that Medicare is preferred is that the patients have free choice of their physicians, including specialists.
Under what system would a low-income patient fare best? One in which the welfare stigma is removed, and everyone is treated equal. One in which financial barriers such as large deductibles and coinsurance are removed. One in which patients have free choice of their health care professionals and hospitals. One in which a high standard of quality is the norm for all. In other words, low-income patients would fare best is a system that would work well for all of us - a single-payer, improved Medicare for all.
Profile InformationGender: Female
Hometown: Washington state
Home country: USA
Current location: Directly above the center of the earth
Member since: Sat Aug 16, 2003, 01:52 AM
Number of posts: 51,907
About eridaniMajor policy wonk interests: health care, Social Security/Medicare/Medicaid, election integrity
- 2021 (1)
- September (1)
- 2016 (61)
- 2015 (78)
- 2014 (58)
- 2013 (93)
- 2012 (105)
- 2011 (9)
- December (9)