CHICAGO (Jan. 27, 2012) — The public believes the uninsured will benefit the most from the 2010 federal healthcare overhaul, while physicians will suffer its most detrimental impacts, according to a recent public poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
The monthly Kaiser Health Tracking Poll released Jan. 26 found 53 percent expected the law to benefit people without insurance, while 25 percent expected it to leave them worse off. Conversely, poll respondents said they expected it to leave 28 percent of physicians in a better position and 37 percent expected those clinicians to face a worse situation.
The survey found members of the public frequently professed ignorance of the law, but their responses tracked projections by the Congressional Budget Office that 32 million uninsured people will gain coverage under the measure.
Respondents were nearly evenly split when asked whether the law would leave hospitals better off (32 percent) or worse off (33 percent).
The survey found a longstanding plurality of the public continued to oppose the law (44 percent), while support trailed (37 percent).
Separately, a plurality wanted to expand the law (31 percent), while smaller segments wanted to repeal it outright (22 percent), leave it in its current form (19 percent), or replace it with a Republican-backed alternative (18 percent).
A solid majority—55 percent—expected the U.S. Supreme Court to find the law's individual mandate unconstitutional, while 29 percent expected the opposite outcome. However, another majority (55 percent) expect some parts of the law to remain in effect even if the mandate is struck down.
The Kaiser Family Foundation telephone survey of a nationally representative random sample of 1,206 adults was conducted Jan. 12-17.
This article appeared in Modern Healthcare magazine, a Chicago-based sister publication of Tire Business.