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HPU/N&R Poll: North Carolinians Say New Health Care Law Improves Access but Worsens Quality

02.26.2014
In: News

HIGH POINT, N.C., Feb. 26, 2014 – A new poll from High Point University and the Greensboro News & Record finds a majority of North Carolinians disapprove of the new federal health care law. They say the law improves health insurance access, but also worsens the overall quality of health care in the United States.

The poll found that 57 percent of respondents say the new health care law will improve access to health insurance coverage for more people, while 40 percent don’t believe it will improve access. At the same time, 53 percent believe the law will make health care overall worse in North Carolina, compared to 40 percent who think the law will make health care better. That follows the results of 54 percent saying they disapprove of the law.

When asked if it were true or false that the terms “Obamacare” and “The Affordable Care Act” referred to the same law, a slight majority (53 percent) correctly said it was true that the phrases did in fact refer to the same law.

“According to a recent Gallup poll that was conducted Nov. 20, 2013, 45 percent of respondents approved of the reforms when they were labeled the ‘Affordable Care Act,’ while 38 percent approved then they were called ‘Obamacare,’” says Dr. Sojung Kim, assistant professor of strategic communication. “Forty-one percent approved when there was no mention of Obama or ACA. Although not perfect, it is promising to see that more than a half of the North Carolinians in the survey knows that those terms refer to the same health care law.”

All adults – Health Care Approval

We’d like to ask you about the 2010 health care law that restructured the U.S. health care system. Do you generally approve or disapprove of the health care law?

Approve – 38 percent
Disapprove – 54 percent
Don’t know/refuse – 9 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) sample surveyed February 16 – 20, 2014, n = 403 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 4.9 percent)

All adults – Health Care Access

Do you think the new health care law will improve access to health insurance coverage? That is, do you think more people will have health insurance coverage as a result of this law?

Yes – 57 percent
No – 40 percent
Don’t know/refuse – 3 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) sample surveyed February 16 – 20, 2014, n = 403 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 4.9 percent)

All adults – Health Care Quality

Do you think the new health care law will make health care better or worse here in North Carolina?

Better – 40 percent
Worse – 53 percent
Don’t know/refuse – 7 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) sample surveyed February 16 – 20, 2014, n = 403 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 4.9 percent)

All adults – Affordable Care Act vs. Obamacare

Would you say this statement is true or false?

“The Affordable Care Act and Obamacare refer to the same U.S. health care reform legislation that was signed into law on March 23, 2010.”

True – 53 percent
False – 27 percent
Don’t know/refuse – 20 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) sample surveyed February 16 – 20, 2014, n = 403 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 4.9 percent)

The most recent survey was fielded by live interviewers at the High Point University Survey Research Center calling on Feb. 16 – 20, 2014. The responses from a sample of all North Carolina counties came from 403 adults with landline or cellular telephones. The Survey Research Center contracted with Survey Sampling International to acquire this sample. The survey has an estimated margin of sampling error of approximately 4.9 percentage points for these respondents. The data are weighted toward population estimates for cellular and landline telephone use, age, gender and race. In addition to sampling error, factors such as question wording and other methodological choices in conducting survey research can introduce additional error into the findings of opinion polls.

Further results and methodological details from the most recent survey and past studies can be found at the Survey Research Center website at http://www.highpoint.edu/src/. The materials on-line include past press releases as well as memos summarizing the findings (including approval ratings) for each poll since 2010.

You can follow the HPU Poll on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/SurveyResearchCenter and Twitter at http://twitter.com/HPUSurveyCenter.

Dr. Martin Kifer, assistant professor of political science, serves as the director of the HPU Poll, and Dr. Sadie Leder Elder, assistant professor of psychology, serves as the associate director of the HPU Poll.

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