Most Americans against government health care guarantee

For the first time in a decade, most Americans say it isn’t the federal government’s responsibility to make sure all Americans have health care coverage.

A new Gallup survey shows an all-time low percentage of Americans support a government health care guarantee, just as President Obama’s Patient and Protection and Affordable Care Act make that more of reality.

More than half, 54 percent, say health care access isn’t the government’s responsibility, and 44 percent say it is the government’s responsibility.

Prior to 2009, a majority always felt the government should ensure health care coverage for all, though Americans’ views have become more divided in recent years, Gallup notes.

The drop is due mainly from Republicans. In 2007, 38 percent of Republicans thought the government should do so; now, 12 percent do.

One thing that hasn’t changed over the years is that Americans still widely prefer a system based on private insurance to one run by the government. The majority, at 57 percent, prefer a private system and 36 percent a government-run system, essentially the same as in 2010 and 2011.

Prior to the passage of the PPACA in 2010, the percentage of Americans in favor of a government-run system ranged from 32 prevent to 41 percent.

The poll also finds that Americans are deeply unsatisfied with the country’s health care system. Currently, 67 percent describe the U.S. healthcare system as either being in a state of crisis (16 percent) or having major problems (51 percent). Additionally, 41 percent rate health care coverage in the U.S. positively, while 58 percent say coverage is only fair or poor. But, they are generally more generally positive about its quality—62 percent rate it as excellent or good.

 

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