Americans are apprehensive about a potential move to a government-run health care, according to a new study by Trusted Choice and the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA).
A national telephone survey of 928 homes earlier this month found that more than 56% of the respondents who have health insurance are against or are unsure how they feel about a government-operated health care plan. It also found that even those who favor the proposal have concerns about choice in care. About 23% of those in favor of the government plan would no longer support it if it was their only option or provider. Of all survey participants, more than 85% said it was important to have a choice of insurance companies and the ability to change health plans. “This national study further demonstrated that Americans want and deserve choices in their health care,” says Robert Rusbuldt, IIABA president and CEO. “If some of the proposals in Washington come to fruition, millions of Americans might be faced with limited or no choice in health care because the private sector wouldn’t be able to compete over time.” IIABA also said it is concerned about how customer relations would be handled by the federal government, and cites the IRS and FEMA as examples of troubled agencies with government help lines. “Should a government operated public plan be implemented, the IIABA is not only concerned about funding and the agent’s role, but how consumers would obtain information, service, and professional advice and guidance,” Rusbuldt says. “Will we have to call a government hotline in Washington to get answers on health plans or coverage?”
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