Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues

Health Care Gives Democrats a Modest Edge with Senior Voters

Drew Altman analyzes the senior health care vote in his Axios column. This group, most likely to vote in the midterms, has more Democrats than Republicans and trusts Democrats more on health. They will give Democrats a real but modest advantage in the election.

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The Role Health Is and Is Not Playing in the Midterms

With less than two weeks until Election Day, Drew Altman discusses health being the top issue, but not necessarily the top factor in voters’ 2018 decisions. He says the longer-term impact of health may be its continuing role in the debate leading up to the 2020 presidential race.

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Narrow Health Care Networks Aren’t Actually That Common

In this Axios column, Drew Altman shows that unlike the individual market, narrow networks are not common in the much larger group market, and discusses why and why it matters.

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Corporate health costs don’t look like a crisis

n this Axios column, Drew Altman presents a puzzle around corporate health costs: companies are talking like there is a crisis, but new data doesn’t really show it.

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Surprise Medical Bills Could be a Powerful Campaign Issue

In this Axios column, Drew Altman discusses why surprise medical bills could be a powerful campaign issue.

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A Comparative Analysis of Affected Residents’ Views of the Response to Hurricanes Maria, Harvey and Katrina

Drew Altman compares residents’ views of hurricane-recovery efforts based on five surveys of residents affected by Hurricanes Maria, Harvey and Katrina.

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Drew Altman analyzes the senior health care vote in his Axios column. This group, most likely to vote in the midterms, has more Democrats than Republicans and trusts Democrats more on health. They will give Democrats a real but modest advantage in the election.
[post_title] => Health Care Gives Democrats a Modest Edge with Senior Voters [post_excerpt] => Drew Altman analyzes the senior health care vote in his Axios column. This group, most likely to vote in the midterms, has more Democrats than Republicans and trusts Democrats more on health. They will give Democrats a real but modest advantage in the election. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => health-care-gives-democrats-a-modest-edge-with-senior-voters [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-05 06:16:36 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-05 11:16:36 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.kff.org/?post_type=perspective&p=381431 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => perspective [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 379871 [post_author] => 143639133 [post_date] => 2018-10-25 14:34:11 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-10-25 18:34:11 [post_content] => Health care has achieved top billing in the midterms. It’s the top issue for Democrats and independents, not Republicans, but that’s been more than enough to propel health to the top of  the issue list in national polls, even ahead of the economy and jobs, a rare status for health care. Democrats have jumped on the salience health care has for their base, using it as a tool to energize voters and bludgeon Republicans -- making 2018 almost the reverse of 2016.
But, the punditocracy and the media have also exaggerated the role health is playing in the midterms. As the table below shows, the top issue is not the same thing as the top factor driving the vote.  Voters will also heavily weigh their feelings about President Trump, their views on the candidates themselves, their desire for a check on Republican and Trump control of Congress, and their allegiance to their party when they cast votes. These factors are not necessarily more important than issues like health care, but they are at least as important.
 
 
Polls ask about the importance of “health” or “health care” to voters. In the campaign, there actually is no such thing as “health care.” Candidates discuss a number of different issues depending on the state, the district, and their campaign strategies.  In some places it’s pre-existing conditions, in others, it’s Medicare-for-All, ACA repeal and replace, Medicaid expansion, prescription drug costs, reproductive health, or some combination of these different health issues.
Health issues matter most right now to Democrats and women. In a midterm, mostly the bases for each party and seniors come out to vote. The greater the turnout on the Democratic side, and among women voters, the more health will matter in this election. It remains to be seen how big turnout will be and how far it will extend beyond the traditional base of voters who show up to vote in midterms. One group we know will vote in midterms are seniors, but Medicare has not been a big issue in this midterm, and seniors tend to vote their party. Somewhat more seniors are Democrats than Republicans (40% to 31%).
Whatever the impact of health care and other factors on the vote, the outcome of the election will have enormous consequences for health policy. Republican control could bring another effort at ACA repeal and replace and a Medicaid block grant. The increasing popularity of the ACA and growing interest in Medicaid expansion could make these efforts even tougher to sell this time around than last time, but they are popular with the Republican base and conservative donors as positioning begins for 2020. Republicans will also continue to promote changes to the health law that conservatives favor through administrative and regulatory action.
If Democrats take the House, their control of that chamber will block any efforts at ACA repeal or a Medicaid block grant. They will also exercise aggressive oversight of the Trump administration’s actions, putting them in a constant media spotlight. If elected, Democratic governors in Georgia and Florida will likely push for Medicaid expansion in those two big, southern states.
The 2020 campaign will begin almost immediately after the midterms, and Democrats will pick up where they left off -- on offense on health care. That may be the most important way in which health matters in politics now; not so much as one of several voting factors in the midterms, but as a continuing issue as the 2020 campaign takes shape.
[post_title] => The Role Health Is and Is Not Playing in the Midterms [post_excerpt] => With less than two weeks until Election Day, Drew Altman discusses health being the top issue, but not necessarily the top factor in voters' 2018 decisions. He says the longer-term impact of health may be its continuing role in the debate leading up to the 2020 presidential race. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-role-health-is-and-is-not-playing-in-the-midterms [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-10-26 13:11:44 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-10-26 17:11:44 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.kff.org/?post_type=perspective&p=379871 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => perspective [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 373595 [post_author] => 36621681 [post_date] => 2018-10-12 06:16:33 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-10-12 10:16:33 [post_content] =>
In this Axios column, Drew Altman shows that unlike the individual market, narrow networks are not common in the much larger group market, and discusses why and why it matters.
[post_title] => Narrow Health Care Networks Aren't Actually That Common [post_excerpt] => In this Axios column, Drew Altman shows that unlike the individual market, narrow networks are not common in the much larger group market, and discusses why and why it matters. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => narrow-health-care-networks-arent-actually-that-common [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-10-12 06:16:33 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-10-12 10:16:33 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.kff.org/?post_type=perspective&p=373595 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => perspective [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 354074 [post_author] => 48746306 [post_date] => 2018-10-01 04:55:13 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-10-01 08:55:13 [post_content] =>
In this Axios column, Drew Altman presents a puzzle around corporate health costs: companies are talking like there is a crisis, but new data doesn’t really show it.
[post_title] => Corporate health costs don't look like a crisis [post_excerpt] => n this Axios column, Drew Altman presents a puzzle around corporate health costs: companies are talking like there is a crisis, but new data doesn’t really show it. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => corporate-health-costs-dont-look-like-a-crisis [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-10-01 04:55:13 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-10-01 08:55:13 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.kff.org?p=354074&post_type=perspective&preview_id=354074 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => perspective [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 274553 [post_author] => 36621681 [post_date] => 2018-09-24 05:50:27 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-09-24 09:50:27 [post_content] =>
In this Axios column, Drew Altman discusses why surprise medical bills could be a powerful campaign issue.
[post_title] => Surprise Medical Bills Could be a Powerful Campaign Issue [post_excerpt] => In this Axios column, Drew Altman discusses why surprise medical bills could be a powerful campaign issue. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => surprise-medical-bills-could-be-a-powerful-campaign-issue [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-09-24 05:50:27 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-09-24 09:50:27 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.kff.org/?post_type=perspective&p=274553 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => perspective [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [5] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 272411 [post_author] => 48746306 [post_date] => 2018-09-12 13:31:54 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-09-12 17:31:54 [post_content] => As we mark its anniversary on September 20th, and another monster hurricane bears down on the East Coast, The Washington Post is reporting the results this week of a survey we did with the paper of how people in Puerto Rico feel about the response to hurricane Maria. The debate about the response to  Maria has pitted rising estimates of the death toll attributed to the hurricane against President Trump’s claims that the administration did a “fantastic job” responding to the storm. We compared residents' views of the federal response in Puerto Rico to those in New Orleans after Katrina and the Texas Gulf after Harvey. We can do this because we did a series of five surveys at KFF in the New Orleans area after Katrina, including one with The Washington Post in the Houston shelters immediately after the storm, two surveys after Harvey with the Episcopal Health Foundation in Texas, and the new survey in Puerto Rico with The Washington Post. This chart summarizes the results. [caption id="attachment_272433" align="aligncenter" width="735"] Local Residents' Views of Federal Response Following Hurricanes Katrina, Harvey, and Maria[/caption] Here are some key numbers from the surveys. Each one of these disasters was different. People’s attitudes in Puerto Rico may reflect a longstanding feeling that the mainland and Washington do not care enough about them, even if you can find similar feelings in urban areas such as New Orleans. Katrina’s impact was magnified by the searing images of people abandoned on their roofs after the levees broke. Still, we found that 83% of residents in Puerto Rico reported that the lives were changed by Maria when it damaged or destroyed their homes, or caused them to lose their jobs or income, among other effects. And there have been many riveting reports of suffering from the hardest hit parts of Puerto Rico. We did not have a way to survey people who have left Puerto Rico because of Maria and not returned, most of whom, by definition, had their lives changed by the storm. Katrina and its gripping TV images probably still set the standard for post hurricane horror. But when you look at how residents feel about the federal response and the number of lives disrupted, Maria looks more like Katrina than we may have realized. [post_title] => A Comparative Analysis of Affected Residents' Views of the Response to Hurricanes Maria, Harvey and Katrina [post_excerpt] => Drew Altman compares residents' views of hurricane-recovery efforts based on five surveys of residents affected by Hurricanes Maria, Harvey and Katrina. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => a-comparative-analysis-of-affected-residents-views-of-the-response-to-hurricanes-maria-harvey-and-katrina [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-09-12 15:08:45 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-09-12 19:08:45 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.kff.org?p=272411&post_type=perspective&preview_id=272411 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => perspective [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) [post_count] => 6 [current_post] => -1 [in_the_loop] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 381431 [post_author] => 36621681 [post_date] => 2018-11-05 06:16:36 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-11-05 11:16:36 [post_content] =>
Drew Altman analyzes the senior health care vote in his Axios column. This group, most likely to vote in the midterms, has more Democrats than Republicans and trusts Democrats more on health. They will give Democrats a real but modest advantage in the election.
[post_title] => Health Care Gives Democrats a Modest Edge with Senior Voters [post_excerpt] => Drew Altman analyzes the senior health care vote in his Axios column. This group, most likely to vote in the midterms, has more Democrats than Republicans and trusts Democrats more on health. They will give Democrats a real but modest advantage in the election. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => health-care-gives-democrats-a-modest-edge-with-senior-voters [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-05 06:16:36 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-05 11:16:36 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.kff.org/?post_type=perspective&p=381431 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => perspective [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [comment_count] => 0 [current_comment] => -1 [found_posts] => 215 [max_num_pages] => 36 [max_num_comment_pages] => 0 [is_single] => [is_preview] => [is_page] => [is_archive] => [is_date] => [is_year] => [is_month] => [is_day] => [is_time] => [is_author] => [is_category] => [is_tag] => [is_tax] => [is_search] => [is_feed] => [is_comment_feed] => [is_trackback] => [is_home] => 1 [is_privacy_policy] => [is_404] => [is_embed] => [is_paged] => 1 [is_admin] => [is_attachment] => [is_singular] => [is_robots] => [is_posts_page] => [is_post_type_archive] => [query_vars_hash:WP_Query:private] => a517a80131edab5de363f41243856467 [query_vars_changed:WP_Query:private] => [thumbnails_cached] => [stopwords:WP_Query:private] => [compat_fields:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => query_vars_hash [1] => query_vars_changed ) [compat_methods:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => init_query_flags [1] => parse_tax_query ) )