NASE News

Consumer Confidence Surrounding Health Care Increased In October

Confidence in health insurance coverage and the ability to access health care increased among American consumers in October, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. With news of economic recovery and action in Congress on health reform, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Care Consumer Confidence Index (RWJF Index) recorded the highest confidence readings in October since the index was started in April 2009. The RWJF Index rose to 104.4 points in October, up from 96.6 points in September.

The survey found that the portion of Americans concerned about losing their health coverage dropped to 23.3 percent in October from 33.4 percent the previous month. The survey also recorded a drop from 53.2 percent to 43.4 percent in the percentage of Americans worried that they would not be able to afford future health care needs.

The RWJF Index ranges from 0 to 200 (with a baseline established at 100 in spring 2009), and is created with data collected by the Surveys of Consumers, with analysis provided by the University of Minnesota’s State Health Access Data Assistance Center.

The October survey also found:

  • 71.9 percent of Americans believe that if health reform is enacted, their access to care will improve or stay the same.
  • The percentage of people that reported having trouble paying their health care bills dropped to 20.6 percent from 23.1 percent in September. 
  • 9.4 percent of people reported being concerned about losing their employer-sponsored health coverage, down from 15.5 percent in September. 
  • Almost eight in 10 Americans (79.2 percent) believe it is important that President Obama includes health reform in plans to address the economy.

Read the full survey here.