In order to assess the opinions and experiences of New Jersey voters on health care reform, health care access and costs, and quality of health care, AARP's New Jersey State Office commissioned this telephone survey of 805 self-identified registered voters age 18+. The survey found that:
- Nearly seven in ten respondents describe the state of health care in New Jersey as being in a state of crisis or having major problems.
- Eighty percent say their out-of-pocket medical expenses have increased over the past five years. When thinking about the next five years, 69% are concerned about having to pay more for their health care, and 61% are concerned about having fewer health care services being covered.
- Ninety-one percent agree that all New Jersey residents should have access to affordable, quality health care and believe it is important to reduce the number of New Jersey residents without health care coverage. Likewise, seventy-seven percent support requiring all New Jersey residents to have health insurance coverage, as long as there would be assistance for those who needed help paying for it.
- A majority of respondents support proposals that would use funds generated from increases in tobacco and alcohol taxes to help pay for insurance coverage for the uninsured. A considerable proportion also supports a tax on foods containing trans-fats as a means of covering the costs of providing coverage for the uninsured.
- When asked about preventable medical errors, two out of three respondents think these types of errors are happening very or somewhat often. More than a third of respondents report that they have been involved in a situation where a preventable medical error was made in their own medical care or that of a family member.
- More than nine in ten say it is important for the State of New Jersey to work to prevent medical errors in hospitals, clinics, and other health care facilities.
This telephone survey of 805 New Jersey residents age 18 and older who reported being registered to vote was conducted between December 19, 2007, and January 19, 2008. For more information, contact Kate Bridges at 207-899-2094.
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