Affordable health insurance need urgent says poll

Kathleen Blanchard's picture
Affordable Health Insurance

Leaders in health care policy and product design say the need for health care reform that will provide affordable health insurance and quality health care is urgent. According to the latest Commonwealth Fund/Modern Healthcare Health Care Opinion Leaders Survey, quality, affordable health insurance for everyone, the goal of healthcare reform, is something that should happen this year.

Providing affordable health care for all Americans requires changes in money spent for health care, an obvious source of unrest for health care providers Commonwealth Fund President Karen Davis says, "Leaders also agree that offering a range of insurance options, and changing the way we pay for health care are critical steps for controlling the growth in health care spending over the next decade.”


Sixty eight percent of health care leaders say there is an urgent need for affordable health insurance through health care reform this year. Sixty five percent of respondents suggest bundled payments for health care services versus traditional fee for service.

Half of health care leaders say payment rates for a public health insurance plan should be set either at Medicare levels or somewhere in between Medicare and commercial insurance rates. Implementation of a national health insurance exchange with the power to enforce standardization of insurance benefits, negotiate premiums, and set rating rules was also viewed by more than half of health care leaders as a necessary part of health care reform and affordable health insurance.

Making health care affordable means improving coverage options, including eliminating the two year wait for Medicare coverage for disabled individuals, supported by seventy two percent of leaders in health care. A majority of leaders (79 percent) suggest taxing alcohol, cigarettes, and drinks sweetened with sugar to help pay for health care reform that could make health insurance affordable for everyone.

Source: The Commonwealth Fund