by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Three in four respondents to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll released Tuesday said they most want to see President Obama and Congress take steps to ensure high-cost drugs for chronic conditions such as cancer are available to those who need them.
A majority of respondents also said they’d like to see policymakers work toward lowering prescription drug prices, protecting consumers from higher charges for visiting out-of-network providers, broadening provider networks and making it easier to understand and compare health plans.
The Affordable Care Act is still a politically charged issue and respondents to the Kaiser poll remained divided over whether it should stay or go, with 43 percent expressing a favorable opinion of the law and 42 percent expressing an unfavorable opinion. That’s the first time favorable views have exceeded unfavorable since November 2012, although the difference is within the margin of error. …
… Regardless of how they feel about the health care law, experts agree there are major, remaining problems with the ways Americans access and pay for health care. The poll reflected that too, with nearly two out of three saying it’s difficult for them to find out how much different kinds of care would cost them.
And while over half said they’re at least somewhat confident they have enough money to pay for usual medical costs, three in 10 said they’re not confident they could pay for a major illness or injury that required hospitalization.