Do Americans believe controversial assertions about health care reform including death panels, threats to Medicare, abortions, illegal immigrants and other claims which the White House administrators have labeled as untrue "myths?"
Findings from a new national survey of Americans by researchers from Indiana University Center for Health Policy and Professionalism Research (CHPPR) and the Indiana University Center for Bioethics says that Americans do believe the "myths" about health care reform, confirming that the White House may indeed be losing this battle.
"A surprisingly large proportion of Americans believe what the White House has dubbed 'myths' about health care reform," said CHPPR director Dr. Aaron Carroll. "Ironically, we found that the least believed myths, such as those related to mandatory end-of-life decisions and euthanasia counseling, are those that have gained the most traction in the media and have resulted in changes to the House bill."
From Aug. 14 -18, a random sample of 600 Americans in the 48 contiguous states and the District of Columbia were asked 19 questions about their personal beliefs concerning health insurance reform assertions. A majority believed most of these statements to be true, with an overwhelming number of Republicans and -- for many issues -- Independents finding truth in the controversial assertions.
Who and what types of services will be covered if the proposed reforms are passed:
Level of government involvement with health care if the proposed reforms pass:
Impact on current health insurance coverage if the proposed reforms are passed:
Interestingly, fewer people surveyed believe statements regarding the impact of proposed reforms on current health insurance coverage.
Costs of the proposed reforms and how the reforms will be paid for:
"It's perhaps not surprising that more Republicans believe these things than Democrats," said Carroll. "What is surprising is just how many Republicans -- and Independents -- believe them. If the White House hopes to convince the majority of Americans that they are misinformed about health care reform, there is much work to be done."
This survey was designed and funded by CHPPR and the IU Center for Bioethics (IUCB) and conducted by Market Strategies International on their behalf. The margin of sampling error for results based on the total sample is plus or minus 4 percentage points.
A full report on the survey can be found at: http://chppr.iupui.edu/research/healthreformmyths.html
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