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NORWALK, Conn., Jan. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Americans are slowly starting to embrace some key components of the controversial health care reform act signed into law by President Barack Obama nearly two years ago, according to a new Harris Interactive/HealthDay poll released today.
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To be sure, Americans remain sharply divided over the legislation, with slightly more than one-third (36 percent) of U.S. adults saying they want the law repealed and 21 percent saying they want it to remain as is. Twenty-five percent would like to see only certain elements of the law modified.
However, support for certain components of the law seems to be slowly increasing with time. For instance, 71 percent of those polled now back the law's provision that prevents insurance companies from denying coverage to those already sick. At the end of 2010, a Harris Interactive/HealthDay poll indicated that 64 percent supported this provision.
The poll released today shows some other provisions of the health reform law gaining acceptance. They include:
But the most controversial aspect of the law -- the so-called individual mandate that requires all adults to have health insurance or face a fine -- remains widely unpopular, with only 19 percent of those polled supporting it, regardless of political party affiliation.
"The public is still divided, mainly on partisan lines, as to whether to implement or repeal all, parts, or none of the health care reform bill," said Harris Poll Chairman Humphrey Taylor.
The poll included 2,415 U.S. adults over age 18 surveyed online between Jan. 17-19, 2012, byHarris Interactive, one of the world's leading custom market research firms. HealthDay is a leading producer and syndicator of health news.
The complete findings of the newest joint Harris Interactive/HealthDay poll are available here. HealthDay's news report is available here. Full data on the poll and its methodology are available at Harris Interactive.
About HealthDayHealthDay is a leading producer and syndicator of evidence-based health news for consumers and physicians and is one of the largest health news syndicators to Internet sites. Its daily consumer health news service http://consumer.healthday.com/ appears on more than 5,000 websites such as Yahoo!, MSN Health, USNews.com, Everyday Health, and government websites like Healthfinder.gov, and MedlinePlus. A daily video version of the top health news story of the day is featured on HealthDay TV, a 90-second daily news broadcast appearing on several major media and U.S. government websites.
HealthDay also produces Physician's Briefing (www.physiciansbriefing.com), a daily news service for physicians and other medical professionals. This service is licensed to hospitals, managed care organizations, media companies, and point of care providers like Epocrates.
HealthDay's custom content division produces specialized content for a variety of audiences and works with some of the larger health portals in the United States.
About Harris InteractiveHarris Interactive is one of the world's leading custom market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Serving clients in more than 215 countries and territories through our North American, European, and Asian offices and a network of independent market research firms, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients - stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.
TABLE 1FAVOR REPEALING, KEEPING OR CHANGING REFORM BILL"It has been nearly two years since the healthcare reform legislation was signed into law by President Barack Obama, much of which has not yet been implemented. Do you think the law should..."
Base: All Adults
Remain in place
Have parts changed
Percentages may not add up exactly to 100% due to rounding.
TABLE 2WHICH BITS OF BILL PEOPLE WANT TO KEEP OR REPEAL"Would you like to keep or to repeal each of the following things, all of which are part of the health care reform bill now?"
It prevents insurers from denying coverage to people
because they are or have been sick.
It provides tax credits to small businesses to help pay
for their employees' insurance.
It allows children to stay on their parents insurance until they are 26.
It will limit insurance companies' profit margins.
New insurance exchanges will be set up where people can shop for insurance.
It requires all employers with 50 or more employees to offer
insurance to their employees or pay a penalty.
Research will be conducted to measure the effectiveness of
An annual fee to be paid by drug companies.
It will increase the number of people who are eligible for Medicaid.
A new Independent Payment Advisory Board to limit the growth of Medicare spending.
It requires people who don't have insurance
to buy it or pay a penalty.
TABLE 3AWARENESS OF ROMNEY'S MASSACHUSETTS HEALTHCARE BILL"Are you aware that when Mitt Romney was governor of Massachusetts he supported andsigned a healthcare bill that provides health insurance to many people in the state?"
TABLE 4MASSACHUSETTS HEALTHCARE REFORM"Please indicate if the following statements about Massachusetts are true or false."
The healthcare reform bill requires that everyone has or buys health insurance
Almost everyone in Massachusetts now has health insurance
The healthcare reform bill is popular with most people in Massachusetts
The healthcare reform bill has been successful in controlling healthcare costs
TABLE 5ATTITUDES TOWARD HEALTHCARE REFORM"How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?"
SUMMARY OF SOMEWHAT/STRONGLY AGREE
Aware of Romney's Bill
The Massachusetts healthcare bill is similar to the bill passed by Congress and signed by President Obama
Strongly/Somewhat Agree (Net)
- Strongly Agree
- Somewhat Agree
Strongly/Somewhat Disagree (Net)
- Somewhat Disagree
- Strongly Disagree
Healthcare reform should be addressed by each state separately, and not by the Federal Government
TABLE 6SUPPORT FOR ROMNEY FOR PRESIDENT"Regardless of all the other issues, do you think that Mitt Romney's support for the Massachusetts healthcare bill is a reason to support or oppose him as a candidate for president?"
SUMMARY OF TRUE
Reason to support
Reason to oppose
Not a reason to either support or oppose
MethodologyThis survey was conducted online within the United StatesJanuary 17-19, 2012 among 2,415 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.
All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words "margin of error" as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.
Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.
Full data available at www.harrisinteractive.com
The results of this Harris Poll may not be used in advertising, marketing or promotion without the prior written permission of Harris Interactive.
These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.
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SOURCE Harris Interactive