This month marks the start of the ACA’s fifth open enrollment period for individuals who purchase health plans on their own. The November Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds three in ten of the public saying they haven’t heard anything at all about the current open enrollment period. Three in ten Americans say they have heard “a little” while four in ten say they have heard either “some” (21 percent) or “a lot” (18 percent). About half of the public (45 percent) say they have heard less about open enrollment this year compared to previous years while four in ten (38 percent) say they have heard “about the same amount.”
Half think that if fewer people sign up for health insurance this year it is mainly because of the actions taken by the Trump administration, while four in ten (37 percent) say it is mainly because the Obama administration and Democrats in Congress designed a flawed program. These attitudes are largely driven by party identification with eight in ten Democrats (78 percent) saying fewer sign-ups would mainly result from actions of the Trump administration and three-fourths of Republicans placing blame on the flawed program designed by the Obama administration and Democrats.
The public are divided in their view of the ACA with similar shares of the public holding favorable views (50 percent) as unfavorable views (46 percent). These attitudes are largely partisan with eight in ten Republicans (81 percent) reporting an unfavorable opinion of the law and eight in ten Democrats (80 percent) reporting a favorable Despite their overall views of the ACA, the majority of the public (61 percent) – including most Democrats (71 percent), independents (58 percent), and half of Republicans (52 percent) – say that because President Trump and Republicans in Congress are now in control of the government, they are responsible for any problems with the health care law moving forward.
This month’s tracking poll also examines public support for two variations of a Medicare buy-in proposal. More than seven in ten of the public favors both proposals with a slightly larger share favoring a proposal that would limit the Medicare buy-in option to those between the ages of 50 and 64 years old (77 percent compared to 72 percent who support a buy-in for people of all ages). While there has not yet been a large-scale public debate on a Medicare buy-in proposal, these results provide some indication of where opinions would land if either of these proposals gains prominence.
Read more at The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.