Public perception of the United States’ Affordable Care Act

Azizur R. Molla, Theresa Ann Bacon-Baguley, Susan DeVuyst-Miller, William Wonderlin, Elizabeth Benedetti


Background/Objective: Implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in the US has given opportunity to obtain health insurance for thousands who were previously uninsured. Many believe that the ACA is an improvement over previous insurance, while others view it as making health care more costly. The purpose of this study was to survey individuals regarding knowledge and perceptions of the ACA.

Methods: Researchers in public health, physician assistant studies, pharmacy and medical education developed a survey to assess the impact of the ACA. The survey included demographic questions and statements which assessed ACA support, and perspectives of the ACA’s impact on pharmaceutical and medical coverage and personal out of pocket costs. A convenience sampling was used to recruit participants at a public venue in an urban setting.

Results: Demographics of the 179 surveyed include: median age 31 years; 84% Caucasian; 37% married; 58% completed a minimum of four years of college; and 45% with income exceeding $50,000. 13 (7%) were uninsured before the ACA, and 8 (4%) after. 130 (73%) had prescription coverage before the ACA with 107 (60%) reported no change in coverage, 22 (12%) better coverage, and 21 (12%) less coverage after the ACA. An association for ACA support was found based on political affiliation with more Democrats than Republicans supporting the ACA (p < .001). 71 (71%) who support the ACA, reported insurance did not improved after the ACA.

Conclusions: These findings identify that in a sample of upper middle class individuals, a majority support the ACA despite a lack of improvement in their own insurance indicating that personal sacrifice for the general population is occurring.

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International Journal of Healthcare  ISSN 2377-7338(Print)  ISSN 2377-7346(Online)

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