Healthcare leaders remain optimistic that the U.S. will find coverage solutions that could halve the percentage of uninsured Americans to 8% in 10 years, according to a new survey commissioned by the Commonwealth Fund. Of the 255 respondents, 75% said employer-sponsored insurance should not be permitted to decline. Eighty-two percent favored incentives for employers to provide basic insurance and 79% favored tax credits or other subsidies for low-wage workers.
Other popular policy options included requiring employers who do not provide health benefits to pay into a fund to insure workers and their families (70%), allowing employers to buy into state-sponsored programs such as Medicaid for their employees (60%), and requiring employers to help finance benefits (52%).
Fifty-seven percent of respondents supported mandating individuals to buy insurance, while 42% supported replacing employer-based coverage with a single-payer plan. Only 22% of respondents supported health savings accounts and 33% backed association health plans as policy options for expanding coverage.
"There appears to be a great deal of consensus among leaders across healthcare sectors . . . about actions we can take that will reduce the numbers of uninsured," Commonwealth Fund President Karen Davis said in a press release.
The online survey was conducted by Harris Interactive between Feb. 3 and Feb. 15; respondents included individuals representing providers, insurers, government, labor, consumers, business and academia. View the survey results.