The Kaiser Health Policy News Index is designed to help journalists and policymakers understand which health policy-related news stories Americans are paying attention to, and what the public understands about health policy issues covered in the news. This month’s index looks at the public’s attention to the ongoing rollout of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), as well as other news stories including the release of a major government study on health care costs.
The Kaiser Health Tracking Poll is the Foundation’s signature survey project, providing consistent and up-to-date information on the public’s opinions, knowledge, and experiences with the U.S. health care system. The Tracking Poll has been a primary tool for monitoring all aspects of public opinion on the Affordable Care Act, including the public’s experiences under the law and their views on its provisions and on efforts to repeal and replace it. The Tracking Poll also captures the public’s views and experiences with Medicare, Medicaid, health costs, prescription drugs and other health issues that are in the news or are driving national and state policy debates. See all health tracking polls below.
Our Health Tracking Poll Interactive allows users to track public opinion on the Affordable Care Act, from the inception of the law to the present, for subgroups based on age, race, income, gender, party identification and insurance status.
- view as grid
- view as list
As outreach efforts for enrollment in the health insurance marketplaces created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) increase over the summer, the August Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds that the public’s most trusted sources of information on the law are not necessarily the ones people are most likely to be hearing from.
The March Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds that the gap between unfavorable and favorable opinions of the ACA narrowed this month among the public and the uninsured, and more want Congress to improve the law than replace it. The survey also finds that six in ten of the uninsured are unaware of the March 31 deadline to sign up for coverage, and half say they plan to remain uninsured.
The Kaiser Health Policy News Index is designed to help journalists and policymakers understand which health policy-related news stories Americans are paying attention to, and what the public understands about health policy issues covered in the news. This month’s Index finds that the public followed the missing Malaysia Airlines flight and the conflict between Ukraine and Russia more closely than news about ACA enrollment. Additionally, many Americans remain unaware of the status of Medicaid expansion in their own states.
Despite the news that 8 million people have signed up for health insurance through the ACA’s new marketplaces, the April Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds no change in overall opinion of the law since last month . The most common reason for remaining uninsured is not being able to find an affordable plan. Also, a majority of the public supports the ACA’s requirement that private health insurance plans cover the full cost of birth control and believes that for-profit companies should be subject to this requirement even if their owners object to birth control on religious grounds.
The Kaiser Health Policy News Index is designed to help journalists and policymakers understand which health policy-related news stories Americans are paying attention to, and what the public understands about health policy issues covered in the news. This month’s Index finds that the public followed the missing Malaysia Airlines flight, the shooting at the Fort Hood army post, and the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, more closely than any health policy news stories. Among health policy news, the most closely-followed story was coverage of how many people have enrolled in health insurance options under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which just over half the public reports following “very” or “fairly” closely.
The October Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds the divided public’s opinion of the ACA remains similar to the previous month.
Amid heavy news coverage of problems with the Affordable Care Act’s rollout, the November Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds a significant negative shift in the public’s views of the law, with roughly half now holding an unfavorable view and just a third holding a positive one.
Data Note: Attempting to Measure Early Impact of the ACA through National Public Opinion Polls- A Note of Caution and What to Watch For
After the October start of open enrollment, under the Affordable Care Act, many journalists, policymakers, and the public at large are eager for early data indicating how the law is working from the perspective of potential enrollees. In particular, given the problems with Healthcare.Gov and some of the state exchange websites, many people want quantitative data about people’s experiences attempting to purchase or enroll in some sort of health insurance coverage using these mechanisms.
This Data Note raises a note of caution about the possible pitfalls of using standard national public opinion polls to make judgments about Americans’ early experiences with health plan enrollment under the ACA.
As the country gears up for implementation of the major provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), June’s Kaiser Health Tracking Poll takes a step back and examines views on health insurance more broadly among some key subgroups, including young adults, the uninsured, and those with pre-existing conditions. The poll finds that the large majority of Americans want and value health insurance.