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AARP Bulletin Survey on Health Care Coverage: Executive Summary

The AARP Bulletin commissioned a nationwide survey on health care coverage and the importance of health care issues to adults. The findings suggest that a clear majority of adults have health care coverage and that health care issues are important in deciding how to vote in the 2008 presidential election.

Survey findings include:

  • 67% of respondents support a shared approach whereby the federal government, businesses, employers, and individuals together pay for providing health care coverage for everyone.
  • 63% of respondents have health care coverage through an employer. This includes 62% of those age 18-49 and 64% of those over 50.
  • 41% of those interviewed had health care coverage through an individually purchased plan. A significant difference was noted between age groups in that fewer of those age 18-49 had individually purchased health care coverage than did those age 50 and older (36% versus 48%, respectively).
  • 87% said health care will be an important issue in determining who to vote for in the 2008 presidential election.
  • 50% felt the nation's health care system has some good things in it but requires fundamental changes to improve it, whereas 31% felt the health care system needs to be completely rebuilt.
  • 81% of had favorable opinions of pharmacists and doctors, and 71% had a favorable opinion of their local hospital.
  • More respondents had unfavorable opinions of HMOs, drug companies and health insurance companies than had favorable opinions: 35% favorable versus 43% unfavorable for HMOs, 38% favorable versus 48% unfavorable for drug companies, and 41% favorable versus 47% unfavorable for health insurance companies.

The study was conducted for AARP via telephone by International Communications Research (ICR) using its national omnibus survey service. Interviews were conducted between September 26 and September 30, 2007, among a representative sample of 1,019 respondents age 18 and older. ICR weighted the data to provide nationally representative estimates of the U.S. adult population 18 years of age and older. For additional information contact Gerard Rainville at GRainville@aarp.org. (7 pages)

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