KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

As Popularity Of Health Law ‘Sinks,’ Some Marketing Will Wait Until New Year

In the meantime, a new poll suggests the problems with the health law rollout have harmed the public's view of the law as a whole, and a second poll suggests the public sees addressing health care costs as the central issue.

The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: Obamacare Advocates Delay Marketing Push Until January
Advocates for the health overhaul law are significantly pushing back the timing of their big advertising blitz aimed at enrolling millions of uninsured Americans in insurance coverage. Ron Pollack, head of the Families USA consumer group and a board member of the Enroll America coalition, says groups like his are now planning on stepping up their advertising about the law in January, ... its big backers “are assuming that there’ll be a ramp-up at the beginning of the coming year,” as the website gets improved,  (Radnofsky, 11/21).

The Fiscal Times: Rebranding Obamacare May Be The Toughest Job Of All 
Even if the administration manages to meet its target of getting the federal website working effectively for “the vast majority of Americans” by month’s end, rehabilitating the Affordable Care Act’s tarnished image will be a heavy lift. ... the administration is living a public relations nightmare that will end only when it fixes the website and persuades the public that – far from being a failure – Obamacare eventually will succeed in providing affordable health insurance to millions of Americans currently without it (Pianin and Ehley, 11/22).

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Troubled Health Law Rollout Damages Public Support
With its troubled rollout of the new insurance marketplaces, the Obama administration has achieved something Republicans have failed to do: seriously dent the popularity of the health care law, according to poll released Friday. Nearly half of Americans now hold an unfavorable view of the law and only a third like it, according to the poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation. (KHN is an editorially independent part of the foundation.) (Rau, 11/22).

Bloomberg: Public Opinion Of Obamacare Hits Low On Website Outages
33 percent of Americans surveyed in the past week said they had a favorable opinion of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act from 38 percent a month earlier, the lowest level since the law was signed in March 2010, the Menlo Park, California-based nonprofit research group, said today (Wayne , 11/22).

Politico: Obamacare Ratings Sink
More than two in five adults said Obamacare will leave the country “worse off,” also a high for the tracking poll, which carries a 3 percentage point margin of error. Meanwhile, the Medicare prescription drug benefit — the Bush-era entitlement that Democrats largely opposed — is enjoying strong popularity, registering 48 percent favorable compared with just 19 percent unfavorable (Cheney, 11/22).

Meanwhile --

McClatchy: Americans Agree With Rationales For Health Care Law, Gallup Finds 
Americans see cost as the nation's more urgent health care issue, according to a Gallup poll released Thursday. In its first survey since the Affordable Care Act's major provisions were rolled, it, it found "two of the main issues the law is designed to address -- health care access and cost -- remain the most vexing to Americans. In particular, the percentage citing cost as the central problem is the highest since 2008” (Lightman, 11/21). 

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