Poll: Georgians Concerned About Effects of Obamacare

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Friday, December 13th, 2013

Healthcare Georgia Foundation today released the results of a statewide public opinion poll to gauge how Georgians perceive the cost and quality of their healthcare. The poll also sheds light on Georgians’ perceptions of healthcare in the state given the complexity of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), changes in its provisions and rollout, and exposure to misinformation fueled by fear and resistance.

According to the poll, Georgians rate the quality of healthcare in the state a modest 7.26/10, with ten being excellent and one being poor. Hospitals and community clinics fared better, receiving an average score of 7.79/10, with emergency rooms receiving the lowest rating of 7.07/10. Generally, Georgians are satisfied with the amount they pay for healthcare, with 63% of respondents report being somewhat satisfied with what they pay; one-third of respondents report being dissatisfied or very dissatisfied (15%) with what they pay.

Georgians were also surveyed about their perceptions about what the government is doing about healthcare today. While most respondents indicated that they are dissatisfied with what is happening at the state and federal levels, they consider the ACA to be quite important. Many Georgians do not have high hopes for the ACA, with nearly half of respondents (47%) expecting that the law will result in them paying more for the healthcare overall, with just 11% anticipating that they will pay less.  

“It is not surprising that Georgians going forward believe or expect the worst regarding their personal healthcare experience,” said Gary Nelson, president, Healthcare Georgia Foundation. “While most are satisfied with the cost and quality of their care, a majority believes  that cost will increase under the new law.”

Georgians further believe that the ACA will result in their family receiving lower quality care than those that believe the care they will receive will be higher.

Additional highlights from the survey include:

  • Nearly three-quarters (72%) of Georgia residents consider Medicaid to be a very important program in Georgia, with another 19% believing it is somewhat important. Just 5% do not consider it to be important at all.
  • About four out of every five Georgians (78%) has a single primary care or family healthcare professional that they tend to see for most health related issues or preventive care.
  • Nearly half of residents (45%) think that state officials’ decisions not to offer a state marketplace for health insurance and not to expand Medicaid in the state will result in them paying more for healthcare. Although the Atlanta region contains about half of all Georgians, just fewer than 37 percent of the jobs created by Medicaid expansion would occur in the Atlanta region. 

To view or download the survey results, click here.