Survey: Americans Worry About Getting Health Coverage, But Leading Democrat Optimistic Of TurnaroundReuters: A new survey published Wednesday suggests that "Americans are steadily losing confidence in their ability to get healthcare and pay for it, despite the passage of healthcare reform legislation."
"Thomson Reuters interviews more than 100,000 U.S. households annually via telephone surveys about healthcare behaviors, attitudes and utilization. This particular index is based in a subset of 3,000 people, representative of the nation as a whole, interviewed every month." The Consumer Healthcare Sentiment Index "found that confidence lost three percentage points from a baseline of 100 in December to 97 in March." The researchers say the health reform legislative process may have led to uncertainty among Americans. Additionally, "[i]n March, more people said they had lost or reduced their health insurance coverage in the past three months or that they expected to delay or cancel an elective surgical procedure" (Fox, 4/27).
The Hill: Meanwhile, House Majority Whip Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., "touted the [Democrats'] efforts to sell the healthcare law, predicting voters would see 'a big difference' from the opposition-dominated town halls of last summer (before the next election). Small business advocates joined Democrats at [their] caucus meeting. Clyburn appeared with a South Carolina radio host and an advocate with the Small Business Majority, a group that backed the healthcare bill. The congressman said Democrats would need to rely on allies to help educate the public, particularly because a large portion of the country will probably hear only criticism about the bill from lawmakers" who opposed it in Congress (Berman, 4/27).
Politico: In one particular congressional race, "Health and pharmaceutical executives are throwing thousands of dollars to the Republicans challenging Indiana Rep. Dan Burton in next week's House primary, deepening the longtime industry critic's woes as he battles to capture his party's nomination." Burton, a 14-term incumbent, has "antagonized health care and drug companies by advocating for alternative medicine and insisting that there is a connection between vaccines and childhood autism." Eli Lilly, WellPoint and Anthem Blue Cross have given money to Burton's challengers (Isenstadt, 4/27). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.