InfoPoll: It’s Called the Affordable Care Act So People Will Judge Its Success Based on Premiums - Healthpocket
InfoPoll | 05-08-13

It’s Called the Affordable Care Act So People Will Judge Its Success Based on Premiums

Poll Also Finds Public Judgment Based on Percent of People Uninsured

A chart showing responses to the question 'Which do you think is the most important issue for judging if Obamacare is a success or failure in 2014?'

Health care in the United States makes up almost eighteen percent of the economy’s gross domestic product. The Affordable Care Act (“ACA” and commonly referred to as “Obamacare”) has made and will continue to make dramatic changes in how health care is paid for and delivered. Effecting change on that much of the economy is an extraordinary endeavor and, not surprisingly, people see the effort differently based on their perspectives on the health care system.

Federal and state exchange marketplaces will soon deliver the most significant changes impacting the health plan industry. The number of uninsured is expected to drop due to the following legislative initiatives:

  • Guaranteed issue of health coverage; neither the decision to provide insurance nor the price of the coverage will be based on an applicant’s health status
  • Requirement that nearly everyone purchase insurance or alternatively pay a penalty at tax time
  • Subsidies paid to people whose incomes fall within four hundred percent of the poverty level
  • Expansion of Medicaid in every state willing to accept the terms of the expansion

The ACA passed Congress and was signed by the President in 2010. Since then some of its provisions have gone into effect and it has been the subject of a great deal of political discussion. With the remaining major provisions focused on insurance coverage set to have an effective date of January 1, 2014, HealthPocket decided to ask consumers which is the most important issue for determining whether Obamacare fails or succeeds.

The survey response reveals that premium affordability is the number one factor at thirty-eight percent of respondents. The only response that came close to this option is the percent of people uninsured at thirty percent. Three other choices, shown above, came in the vicinity of ten percent each.


HealthPocket published prior research studies looking at the existing individual and family health plan universe and how plans can currently decline to cover or charge more than the quoted price to people based on their health status. The research also reviewed where plans fall in the categories that make up the ACA’s essential benefits requirements. Changes in the ACA will provide more comprehensive coverage to more people as can be seen in that prior research. However, this survey is a reminder that many people will also be looking for less expensive coverage.

HealthPocket is supporting consumers in their quest for affordable coverage by giving them free access to information about cost and quality of health plans available in their location. Users are welcome to visit HealthPocket’s individual and family plan section to conduct their search.


Results are based on 1,001 responses to an online survey conducted from May 6, 2013 to May 8, 2013. Respondents were asked “Which do you think is the most important issue for judging if Obamacare is a success or failure in 2014?” Respondents had the option of choosing only one of the following answers: "Premium affordability," "% of people uninsured," "% of people keeping existing health plan," "% of people keeping their doctor" and “breadth of insurance benefits.” The order of these options was randomized across respondents. The survey was displayed within a network of over 100 different news web sites and other content sites. Demographic inferencing and methodology to acquire survey respondents who approximate national statistics on age, gender, income, and region was performed by technology administered by Google. Race, education, and health insurance status were not examined. Margin of error across the responses is estimated at +3.0%/ -3.0%.


Steve Zaleznick, Executive Director for Consumer Strategy and Development at, completed this survey analysis. Correspondence regarding this study can be directed to Mr. Zaleznick at Feedback and questions are welcome but, given the volume of email, personal responses may not be feasible.



1See National Health Expenditure Projections:


Steve Zaleznick

Steve Zaleznick is Executive Director for Consumer Strategy and Development for HealthPocket. He has several decades of experience developing and leading highly regarded programs for consumers of health care and financial services. Key areas of focus for Mr. Zaleznick include Medicare, health insurance decision support tools and health insurance exchanges.

Mr. Zaleznick lives in Washington, DC and holds a degree in Economics from Brown University and a law degree from Georgetown University. provides information on insurance products. If you choose to obtain a quote or apply for an insurance plan, you may be transferred to a partner website to complete your request. Always review the privacy and terms of use of the partner website.

HealthPocket is a free information source designed to help consumers find medical coverage. Whether you are looking for Medicare, or an individual and family health insurance plan, we will help you find the right healthcare option and save on your out of pocket healthcare costs. We receive our data from government, non-profit and private sources, and you should confirm key provisions of your coverage with your selected health plan. If you select a plan presented on our site, you will be directed (via a click or a call) to one of our partners who can help you with your application. Our website is not a health insurance agency and not affiliated with and does not represent or endorse any health plan. HealthPocket, Inc. is part of the Benefytt Technologies, Inc. family of companies.