Only 38 Percent Feel Positive About Health Reform

In 2012, only 38 percent felt positively about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), down from 49 percent in 2011, according to recent research from the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions. The survey, Deloitte 2012 Survey of U.S. Health Care Consumers, noted that uncertainty about the ACA increased, with 34 percent in 2012 either not knowing or expressing no opinion versus 21 percent in 2011.

Views of the ACA’s likely success in achieving its stated goals are mixed. Deloitte found that 27 percent of consumers felt that health care reform will successfully increase access to health insurance coverage and 20 percent believed that reform is likely to be successful in increasing the quality of care, motivating individuals to improve their health (20 percent), better coordinating care (20 percent), and ensuring access to the latest technologies (21 percent). However, only 16 percent felt that the ACA will successfully decrease health care costs overall.

Health insurance. The survey found that 80 percent of consumers reported having some kind of health insurance in 2012. Most consumers have insurance from employers (47 percent), through government programs (27 percent) or purchased independently (6 percent). Twenty percent of survey respondents were uninsured: Cost (61 percent), changing or losing employment (26 percent), and employer not offering insurance (19 percent) are key reasons for not currently having insurance.

Satisfaction with health plans has declined in recent years, from 52 percent in 2009 saying they are satisfied to 44 percent in 2012. However, 34 percent of respondents gave the overall performance of the health care system an “A” or “B” in 2012, up from 20 percent in 2009. And, 24 percent gave it a “D” or “F,” down from 37 percent in 2009.

The survey also found the following:

Wellness programs. Participation in healthy living/wellness programs offered by employers, health plans, and other organizations declined between 2011 (25 percent) and 2012 (10 percent).

Information resources. In 2012, 45 percent of consumers reported looking online for information about treatment options—similar to those who did so in 2011 (43 percent) but lower than the 55 percent in 2010 and 57 percent in 2009.

Social media. Twenty-six percent of total respondents said they used social media for health-related purposes in the past year.

Traditional health services utilization. The majority (76 percent) of consumers said they visited a physician or other health care professional in the past year (down from 85 percent in 2011). In addition, 65 percent went for a routine check-up (76 percent in 2011) and 39 percent for an injury or illness (54 percent in 2011) (figure 19).

The survey contains responses from 4,012 U.S. adults. For more information, visit http://www.deloitte.com/centerforhealthsolutions.

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