January 17, 2019

Is US health care in 'crisis?' Here's what Democrats and Republicans say (and how it's changed in the Trump era).

Daily Briefing

    A majority of Americans believe the U.S. health care system is in a state of crisis or has major problems, according to a Gallup poll published Monday.

    For the poll, Gallup surveyed 1,037 Americans between Nov. 1, 2018, and Nov. 11, 2018.

    15 must-have features of the consumer-focused health system

    US residents don't like the health care system

    According to the poll, 70% of respondents said they believe the U.S. health care system is in a state of crisis or has major problems, compared with 30% of respondents who said they believe the U.S. health care system has minor or no problems, The Hill reports.

    The percentage of Americans who have said they believe the U.S. health care system is in major crisis or has significant problems has stayed about the same for nearly 20 years, according to Gallup.

    The poll also showed that majorities of both Democratic and Republican respondents said they believe the U.S. health care system is in a state of crisis or has major problems. Specifically, the poll found:

    • 84% of Democratic respondents said they believe the U.S. health care system is in a state of crisis or has major problems—up from 76% of Democratic respondents in 2017 and 63% in 2016; and
    • 56% of Republican respondents said they believe the U.S. health care system is in a state of crisis or has major problems—down from 71% of Republican respondents in 2017 and 80% in 2016.

    According to Gallup, majorities of both Democratic and Republican respondents have said they believe the U.S. health care system is in a state of crisis or has major problems since 2002. However, the percentages of Democratic and Republican respondents who held that view has fluctuated over the years—with an especially sharp change after the election of President Donald Trump in 2016.

    US residents do like the quality of care

    Although a majority of respondents held an unfavorable view of the U.S. health care system, 55% of respondents rated the quality of U.S. health care favorably, according to Gallup. Gallup noted that smaller percentages of respondents expressed favorable views of health care coverage and costs in the United States, at 34% and 20%, respectively. According to Gallup, respondents rated health care access and costs as the most significant health problems in the United States  (Baker, "Vitals," Axios, 1/15; Samuels, The Hill, 1/14; Lagasse, Healthcare Finance News, 1/14; McCarthy, Gallup, 1/14).

    Playbook for the consumer-focused health system

    As health care becomes an increasingly consumer-driven market, health systems are at a critical fork in the road.

    To shape their marketplaces, health systems must understand how consumer preference can translate to market share gains. This publication highlights 15 core features of a truly consumer-focused health system and leading examples of each feature.

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