The majority of people in the United States believe that the country does not manage health care well.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Emmanuel Obeng-Dankwa occasionally skips taking his blood pressure medicine when he is stressed about paying the rent on his New York City apartment.
Security guard Obeng-Dankwa, 58, remarked, "If there's no money, I prefer to skip the medication to being homeless."
According to a recent study from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, he is one of the many Americans who believe that the nation's health care system may use improvement.
Less than half of Americans feel the U.S. health care system is typically managed effectively, according to the study, which shows that public satisfaction with it is remarkably low. Just 12% of people claim that it is handled extremely or very well. When it comes to aging seniors' health care, Americans have similar opinions.
Overall, the public gives even worse ratings for how effectively the nation is handling mental health care, nursing home care quality, and prescription drug pricing, with only 6% or less of respondents indicating such is the case.
The American healthcare system is really difficult to understand, said A. The University of Michigan Center for Value-Based Insurance Design's director is Mark Fendrick. It has gotten worse as a result of the COVID pandemic.
Hospitals around the nation are struggling with staffing shortages and health care worker fatigue more than two years after the pandemic began. Additionally, according to Fendrick, Americans are still having difficulty accessing in-person medical care since health facilities imposed restrictions as COVID-19 poisoned and killed millions of people across the nation.
Nearly 8 out of 10 Americans, according to the study, say they are at least somewhat anxious about having access to high-quality healthcare when they need it.
With nearly 6 in 10 stating they are very or extremely anxious about accessing good treatment, adults of color, particularly Black and Hispanic adults, are overwhelmingly concerned about health care access. 44% of white individuals reported feeling the same level of worry.
The American healthcare system has long been plagued by racial inequities. The COVID-19 pandemic has made them glaringly evident, with Black and Hispanic persons dying from the virus at disproportionately high rates. Recent monkeypox infections also had a disproportionately high prevalence among black and Hispanic men.
Compared to 42% of males, 53% of women stated they are extremely or very concerned about getting quality treatment.
While there is agreement among Americans over their dissatisfaction with the health care system, this consensus breaks down when it comes to fixing it.
The majority of adults—roughly two-thirds—believe that the federal government must guarantee that every American has access to health insurance. Those between the ages of 18 and 49 are more likely than those over 50 to share this opinion. From 62% in 2017 and 57% in 2019, the proportion of respondents who believe that the government is responsible for providing health insurance has increased in recent years.
However, there isn't agreement on how that coverage might be provided.
A single-payer health care system, which would mandate that people obtain their health insurance from a government plan, is supported by about 4 in 10 Americans. A higher percentage, 58%, support a universal government health insurance program.
There is also widespread support for measures that would assist Americans in covering the costs of long-term care, such as a federally run health insurance program comparable to Medicare, the government's health insurance program for those 65 and older.
Pennie Wright, a retired nurse from Camden, Tennessee, is opposed to the idea of a government-run healthcare system.
She was shocked to receive a $200 charge for her annual well-woman visit after switching to Medicare this year. Previously, her private insurance plan had covered the cost.
She much appreciates the adaptability of her insurance policy.
Wright stated, "I think we have the best healthcare system in the world, and we can choose where we want to go.
Nearly two-thirds of Americans said they were pleased with the government's intervention to offer free COVID-19 testing, vaccinations, and treatment. About 2 in 10 people had no opinion on the government's response.
At the beginning of the month, the government's funding for the free COVID-19 testing ran out. Furthermore, despite claims to the contrary, the White House does not have the funds on hand to cover the cost of providing future rounds of COVID-19 booster shots to every American.
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