NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Survey: How To Help The Medically Uninsured

May 22, 2000

A new survey polled both insured and uninsured Americans on the topic of lack of health coverage. It found that half of Americans (53 percent) report knowing someone who is without health insurance. The public believes that the lack of coverage is a serious national problem, and more than eight out of 10 Americans (84 percent) think health care should be provided equally to everyone.

The survey underscores why this problem has been so difficult to solve:

  • Slightly more than half (53 percent) of the American people are willing to pay at least $30 more per month in lager premiums or taxes to cover the uninsured.
  • But a politically formidable percentage of American people (46 percent) are only willing to pay a small amount ($5 a month) or nothing at all to help uninsured people get coverage.

Moreover, the survey suggest how difficult is will be to reach consensus on addressing the issue.

Survey respondents voiced roughly equal support for proposals that expand public program such as Medicaid and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (21 percent); requiring business to offer private health insurance to their employees (21 percent); a government-sponsored health insurance program for all Americans (21 percent); and providing tax deductions and credits to help people purchase private coverage on their own (20 percent).

Source: "NewsHour/Kaiser Survey Underscores Difficulties Faced by Those Without Health Insurance," Kaiser Family Foundation, May 16, 2000.


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