Patients Rising – in coordination with Gravis Marketing, a leading market research and polling firm – recently conducted a survey to better understand American voters’ views on various national health issues. The data from the survey – which was conducted in late April and early May – reflects the views of more than 1500 registered voters across the country.
The survey provided important insights on three broad issue areas:
- Access & Affordability
- Drug Pricing Policies
- Trust Among Healthcare Stakeholders
Last week, we released a report on Access & Affordability – the first of three reports discussing the results of the survey.
Several key insights can be gleaned by looking at these results. For example, the survey found that more voters are concerned with higher health insurance premiums than the cost of prescription drugs. According to the poll, 82% of voters with health insurance have prescription drug coverage. And, nearly nine out of ten people with insurance said they were satisfied with that coverage – more than half were very satisfied.
In addition, only about 18% of voters said they found it difficult to pay for their prescriptions. However, not surprisingly, those with multiple prescriptions were more likely to report having difficulty affording the cost of their prescribed medicines.
However, despite the overall affordability of prescription drugs reflected in the results, voters did have some concerns about drug coverage. Just over half of those surveyed said their out-of-pocket costs for prescriptions stayed the same last year. But just over a third said that cost had gone up. Less than one out of ten participants said their costs went down.
Nearly half of the survey participants whose prescriptions are covered by insurance reported a problem with their coverage at some point in the past year. The most common problems – all affecting about one in five voters in the poll – were having to wait more than two days for a prescription, needing to try a less expensive alternative drug, or not having coverage for a drug prescribed by their doctor.
When it comes to public policy, the majority of voters in the survey supported changes that would further lower their health expenses. These included requiring insurers to pass along to patients the discounts they negotiate with drug companies (77% support), bringing generics to the market more quickly (76%), and capping patients’ annual prescription drug costs (62%).
We recommend reading the entire report for additional information on how voters see the issues surrounding Access & Affordability.