July 5, 2012 -- A WebMD survey of nearly 8,000 Americans reveals that people are divided over last week's Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act -- with 40% supporting it and 36% disagreeing with the highly anticipated decision.
A corresponding survey of health care professionals on Medscape/WebMD showed that health professionals disagreed just as sharply as consumers.
WebMD and Medscape conducted the surveys immediately following the court's ruling that upheld the health care reform law.
Many people indicated that they were worried that the law might drive up their health care costs (36%) or felt unsure how it might impact them personally (32%).
When asked what should happen to health reform in the future, most said they'd like to see the law either completely or partially repealed. But there was also surprising support for a single-payer, government-sponsored option.
Men were significantly more likely than women to disagree with the 5-4 decision, which upheld key parts of the health reform law but also let states opt out of a major expansion of the Medicaid program. Men were also significantly more likely to say they want to see the entire law repealed.
Age also seemed to shade the results. Compared to older adults, those under age 35 were more likely to voice uncertainty about the health reform and its future. They were more likely to say, for example, that they didn't know whether or not they agreed with the Supreme Court's decision. They were also more likely than older adults to admit that they weren't sure how they would be personally impacted by the law. They also said they felt unsure about what should happen next.
More than 5,500 women and 2,400 men took part in the online survey. Nearly 75% of respondents were between the ages of 45 and 74.
- 48% said they had health insurance through an employer.
- 35% indicated that they were covered by Medicare.
- 21% indicated that they bought health insurance on their own.
- 8% said they had no health insurance.
- 7% reported another type of government-sponsored health insurance.
- 6% were covered by Medicaid.