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Hoosiers Speak Out: Indiana's Health Care System Needs Reform

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Health care reform in Indiana is in the forefront of many residents’ minds. As Baby Boomers and those born at the beginning of Generation X age, many are concerned about rising health care costs. Concerns related to affordability of health care services, including prescription drugs and long-term care services, dominate the issue.

AARP’s Indiana State Office commissioned this survey to explore the views of two samples of residents in the state: AARP members ages 50-64 and general population residents age 30-49, primarily located in South Central Indiana. This study on the Baby Boomers and Generation X explores how these important cohorts feel about the current state of health care in Indiana and their opinions on prospective reform. Key findings include the following:

  • Indiana residents feel the pain of rising health care costs. Out-of-pocket medical costs have increased for 84 percent of those surveyed over the past five years such that 37 percent are extremely concerned or very concerned about not being able to pay current or prior medical bills.
  • Affordability of current and future health care costs is an area of concern for Hoosiers. Eighty-three percent of Indiana residents strongly agree that all state residents should have access to affordable and adequate health care coverage and 91 percent believe that it is extremely or very important that the state help to make it more affordable. Almost three-fourths of those surveyed say they are more likely to vote for a candidate that makes this issue a priority.
  • Rising prescription drug costs are of concern to Indiana residents. Over 40 percent of respondents indicate that they are extremely or very concerned about being able to afford the cost of medications in the coming two years and 85 percent believe that it is extremely or very important for the state to ensure prescription affordability.
  • Indiana residents want affordable choices for long-term care services. Two-thirds of the respondents indicate that they are extremely or very concerned about being able to afford long-term care services for themselves and their family, while 82 percent believe that the state should make it a top or high priority to ensure affordable long-term care choices.

Mail surveys were sent in September-October 2007 to a randomly selected sample of 2,000 members age 50-64 and 5,000 adults age 30-49 living in South Central Indiana; 1,071 and 693 individuals returned the surveys, respectively, for response rates of 54 percent and 14 percent and sampling errors of plus or minus 2 and 4 percent. Further information about the survey may be obtained by contacting Erica Dinger of AARP Knowledge Management at 202-434-6176. (45 pages)

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