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Little Support for GOP Plan to Privatize Medicare: Poll
Respondents to Harris Interactive/HealthDay survey suggest lowering fees paid to drug companies, hospitals and doctors
NORWALK, Conn., USA (June 13, 2011) – A new poll finds little support for privatizing Medicare, even though most people agree the government-sponsored health insurance program for older Americans needs major changes if it is to survive.
- Two-thirds of those polled said cut prescription drug prices while 59 percent said wealthy seniors should shoulder more of the cost burden.
- Forty-four percent said hospitals should get lower reimbursement fees from Medicare (28 percent were against this idea), and 40 percent said doctors should receive lower reimbursements (33 percent opposed this recommendation).
- A smaller plurality said people should be charged more for treatments that aren't cost effective (37 percent for and 26 percent against).
- But higher co-payments and deductibles were a non-starter among most of those polled, with 59 percent opposing increases in co-payments and deductibles (versus 18 percent in favor) and 50 percent opposing increases in taxes as Medicare costs rise (with 23 percent in favor).
- The respondents were about equally split on how they felt about raising the age of eligibility for Medicare.
Age also played a role in the responses of those polled, with older people more likely to favor leaving Medicare as it is, meaning leaving "traditional" Medicare in place while also keeping the Medicare Advantage program that is provided by private insurance companies.
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Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading custom market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers expertise in a wide range of industries including healthcare, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Serving clients in over 215 countries and territories through our North American, European, and Asian offices and a network of independent market research firms, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients - stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.
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