PwC survey finds the climate is right for reform

The odds that we’ll see major health care reform in 2009 seem to be increasing. PriceWaterhouseCoopers and the National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions surveyed consumers and health care insiders to get their views on health care reform. Among the findings:

  • 75 percent of consumers and 79 percent of insiders expect reform during Obama’s first term
  • Half of consumers are worried they won’t be able to afford health insurance
  • 75 percent of consumers think the proposals made during the Presidential campaign are insufficient to resolve the underlying problems in the system
  • 59 percent of consumers said government would do as well or better than private insurers in managing and paying for health care

There are some telling differences between the consumer and insider perspectives:

  • Insiders are strongly in favor of coverage mandates, which after all increase the number of paying customers
  • Consumers care more about cost control

This survey represents a broader consensus than one typically sees for reform. Of course the devil is in the details, but I think something along the lines of Obama’s health plan is likely to be enacted. In an environment where one company (AIG) can suck down $150 billion from the government with little to show for it –and where fiscal stimulus is considered good– the high cost of the Obama plan may even be an asset. With Ted Kennedy leading the way and a crisis atmosphere, expect to see some movement when the new Congress convenes.

The survey is to be formally released on November 20 at the National Press Club in a national town hall meeting, viewable here at 1 pm EST.

November 19, 2008

4 thoughts on “PwC survey finds the climate is right for reform”

  1. I agree that “the time is right.” But it should also be mentioned that “the time is right to do it the right way.”

    A complete overhaul of the system is not what we need. Increased usage of HSAs (Health Savings Accounts) and a risk pool for every state will accomplish a lot.

    Let’s see what that does first.

  2. It is such a biased poll to say that most Americans want reform. But what kind of reform? Do they want government involvment? Most say no.

    True reform would place more of the power with the consumer and away from insurance companies. Consumer driven health plans would be the way to go.

  3. Well, where does everyone sit after reform. I can tell you in Michigan we have no policies for young children, and 20%-30% renewal rate increases still.

    We were lucking enough to get a state run program funded by the gov’t. Great plan? You have to be uninsured for six months before, and denied by a private carrier to even qualify for the plan.

    Interesting to see where this goes.

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