UTHealth/Zogby International survey shows how likely voters want to proceed on healthcare reform
HOUSTON - (Feb. 24, 2010) - Lawmakers working on the healthcare reform effort may want to consider starting over, according to a poll commissioned by a public policy expert at UTHealth, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.
“Americans have reservations about the healthcare bills in the House and Senate,” said S. Ward Casscells, M.D., vice president of external relations and public policy and the John Edward Tyson Distinguished Professor in Cardiology at UTHealth.
When asked what would be the best course of action to take in regard to healthcare reform at this point, 44 percent selected start over, 25 percent choose pass some legislation and modify as necessary and 18 percent selected have the House just pass the Senate bill and modify later as needed.
Casscells and John Zogby, chairman of Zogby International, released the findings on Feb. 16 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The online survey of 2,525 likely voters was taken between Jan. 29 and Feb. 1, 2010 by Zogby International. The survey had a margin of error of +/- 2 percent.
Casscells said support for healthcare reform is actually stronger than it was a year ago. Thirty-three percent reported they were more supportive of healthcare reform than a year ago and 26 percent reported they were less supportive. Remaining respondents never supported healthcare reform, had unchanged levels of support or were not sure.
When asked if they believed newly-elected Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown should join fellow Republicans in opposing broad healthcare reform legislation or try to work with Republicans and Democrats to find a compromise on healthcare reform, 61 percent reported that he should try to work with both parties to find a compromise and 36 percent reported he should join Republicans in opposing broad healthcare reform.
Even in these tough economic times, healthcare reform remains a top three issue. Asked what should be the main focus of President Obama and Congress right now, 46 percent choose unemployment, 26 percent selected excess government spending and 18 percent opted for healthcare reform.
In terms of specific healthcare reforms, 40 percent thought cutting costs was the most important healthcare reform. Thirty-one percent opted for expanding coverage. And, 14 percent thought improving the quality of care was most important.
About 40 percent of those surveyed supported the healthcare reform legislation common to the House and Senate bills, while about half opposed it.
More than 80 percent reported that they were familiar with the key components of the healthcare reform legislation currently in the House and Senate.
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