April Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: Core Views on ACA Remain Stable After Oral Arguments

The increased public attention to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) generated by the Supreme Court’s consideration of the law did not meaningfully change the public’s opinion of the law overall or of the specific provision at the heart of the legal case against it, the individual mandate. Forty-two percent say they have a favorable opinion of the law this month and 43 percent have an unfavorable one, a division virtually unchanged from March. Similarly, the mandate is as unpopular as it was in last month, but not more so. But, the Supreme Court challenge did appear to have an impact on Americans’ sense of familiarity with the ACA. In April three in four Americans are aware that the individual mandate is part of the health care law, up from 64 percent before the Court heard oral arguments last month. And the proportion who feel they understand how the law will impact them jumped up 12 percentage points to 51 percent.

Although most Americans (63 percent) don’t expect to have to change anything about their health coverage when the mandate takes effect in 2014, nearly three in ten do believe they will have to make some change to their current insurance arrangements. For more on the survey, including updated numbers on public confidence in the Supreme Court, check out the topline, charts, and summary document of the poll findings.


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