The Commonwealth Fund is out with a new survey this morning which demonstrates that even as most Americans are against the Affordable Care Act — and all of the bickering and back and forth politics it represents — they actually support the many things it tries to accomplish. The topline finding is that 72 percent of American adults believe that the system needs a major overhaul, but the majority are also asking for change that will soon be implemented through the ACA:
- Believe it is very important or important to have one place or doctor responsible for primary care and coordinating care (93%).
- Think that all of their doctors should have access to their medical records (96%).
- Want information about the quality of care provided by different doctors and hospitals (96%).
- More than four of five adults (89%) say it is important to know about the costs of care for which they will be responsible, before receiving care.
It’s worth pointing out that one can make a table of two columns — place what the ‘public wants’ on the left and what the ‘law does’ on the right — and conclude that for the most part, the ACA addresses the desires of most Americans. It may not go far enough or do it fast enough, but it begins to move the system in the right direction. Meanwhile, the other approach would repeal all of these reforms and start over and even though that is also gaining traction, I suspect that if the pollster listed the provisions that would be repealed, support would drop off dramatically. This will likely be the case if the law is implemented effectively.