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Our latest national consumer survey reaching 1,000 registered voters measured feelings about the U.S. healthcare system, the U.S. economy during the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 Presidential election and telemedicine. The survey comes at a crucial decision-making time of the year when the U.S. Presidential election, health insurance open enrollment period, and the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period are fast approaching for many Americans. The United States Healthcare System When rating the U.S. healthcare system: 36% said fair. 27% said good. 24% said poor. 11% said excellent. 2% were unsure. When asked if our healthcare system has changed for the better or worse due to COVID-19: 45% felt it was unchanged. 33% felt it was worse. 14% said it was better. 8% were unsure. Also of note, 69% said giving more control to patients and doctors is the key to improving the United States healthcare system. Meanwhile, 11% chose giving more control to government officials and bureaucrats. And 20% were not sure how to improve it. Participants were also asked about the quality of U.S. healthcare services since the Affordable Care Act (ACA or “Obamacare”) was enacted: 31% said the quality of healthcare has gone down, while 29% said it’s gone up. Lastly, 84% of our respondents said the cost of all health care services, procedures, and medications should be made available in advance to patients. The 2020 Presidential Election Our survey also honed in on what’s most important to people in the 2020 U.S. Presidential election: healthcare reform, the economy, civil rights, law and order, government corruption, and our response to COVID-19. Here’s how our participants responded: 95% said the U.S. economy is an important issue. 91% said government corruption is an important issue. 88% said our nation’s response to COVID-19 is an important issue. 88% said healthcare reform is an important issue. 86% said civil rights is an important issue. 85% said law and order is an important issue. Health Insurance in the United States Our survey also gauged feelings on an array of health insurance and employment topics, including consumer feelings about health insurance, a proposal to ban private insurance, and COVID-19 impacts on health insurance. When it comes to our respondents’ feelings on their health insurance: 38% rated their health insurance as good. 26% rated their health insurance as excellent. 23% rated their health insurance as fair. 10% rated their health insurance as poor. And when asked what type of health insurance has the best medical care coverage: 40% said employer-sponsored coverage. 21% said Medicare. 19% were unsure. 12% said Medicaid. 9% said Obamacare. Of note, 25% of our respondents have lost or know someone who lost their health insurance during COVID-19. For those who are employed, 38% are reluctant to switch jobs right now because they want to keep their current health insurance. Last but not least, the survey gauged a possible proposal to ban all private health insurance companies and require every American to get their coverage through the federal government. When asked about this concept, 15% of respondents strongly favored the proposal, while 35% were strongly opposed. As for the rest of the group, 19% were somewhat in favor and 18% were somewhat opposed to the proposal. Employment and Working From Home Our national survey also covered what’s important when considering or accepting a new job. In the “very important” category: 78% said salary. 66% said health insurance. 49% said time off. 33% said working from home. Although working from home has the lowest percentage on the “very important” scale, it turned out to be top-of-mind for some respondents. 49% felt that working remotely is better for overall health and well-being, and 40% would take a pay cut to work from home. Pulse Check on COVID-19 Testing Over the course of our survey series, we’ve gathered opinions about Coronavirus testing. Here are the latest findings: 60% were not worried about the cost of Coronavirus treatment - a decrease from the percentage we’ve seen over the past few months. 52% thought frequent COVID-19 testing is the best way to control the spread. 52% thought every child should be tested for COVID-19 on a weekly basis. The Latest on Telemedicine Telemedicine use during the coronavirus pandemic is another topic we’ve kept an eye on. In our latest survey, 79% had not used telemedicine prior to the pandemic, but 43% have used telemedicine during the pandemic. While highlighting several advantages of telemedicine versus visiting a doctor in person, we asked our respondents which telemedicine perk is most appealing to them. 55% said avoiding the waiting room. 47% said convenient scheduling. 47% said the wait times were better. 38% said getting care from home. Full Current Events in the United States Survey Results Click here to download the full results. Our Survey Methodology The above survey results were gathered through a national survey of 1,000 registered voters, which was conducted September 4 - 8, 2020. The survey has margin of sampling error of +/- 3.1 percentage points. See More Healthinsurance.com Surveys August 2020: Multigenerational Perspectives on COVID-19 July 2020: Medicare Eligible Seniors Survey Findings: Technology, COVID-19, the 2020 Election and More June 2020: Healthcare Technology, Self-Care and More May 2020: Testing, Mental Health, and More April 2020: Economic Impacts and Health Insurance Trends March 2020: Telemedicine Usage During COVID-19
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Telemedicine usage, financial insecurity, healthcare technology, and a digital detox: These are just some of the topics we covered in our most recent healthinsurance.com COVID-19 survey. But this time, we heard from a multigenerational mix of millennials, Generation X, and Baby Boomers. And the results were pretty eye-opening. Multigenerational Survey Highlights Telemedicine Usage and COVID-19: Now vs. Then Across the three generations, 60% are more comfortable with using telemedicine now than they were six months ago overall. Gen X stood out as the age group that was the most comfortable with using telemedicine. 54% of our multigenerational respondents plan to use telemedicine with the coronavirus pandemic is over. Once again, GenXers were most receptive to this virtual healthcare alternative. 52% have had their doctors encourage a telemedicine appointment versus an in-office visit. COVID-19 and the Digital World Across the three generations, 71% of our respondents have found themselves on the computer or phone more frequently during the pandemic. So it’s no surprise that 39% feel they need a “digital detox” now more than ever. Millennials, especially, felt the need to take a break from scrolling Instagram feeds or sending memes to friends: 51% would take the digital detox. And how about the use of streaming devices, social media platforms, wearables, and online retailers during COVID-19? Here are the popular picks across the three generations: Binge Watching: 27% are watching their favorite shows from their Smart TVs. Social Media: 61% are using Facebook the most. And it’s especially a fan favorite for 75% of our Baby Boomer respondents. Wearable Technology: 47% use wearables to monitor their health. 25% of them are using the Apple Watch to track their fitness activity. Online Shopping: 72% are shopping online more frequently than they did before the pandemic. (Our guess is Amazon, Instacart, and maybe a little UberEats). Coronavirus Vaccine, Masks and More Across the three generations, 87% are comfortable having their temperatures checked before entering an establishment. 69% will get a COVID-19 vaccine once it becomes available. 41% feel that masks are the most effective way to prevent the spread of coronavirus. The State of Healthcare, Economy and Finances During COVID-19 Across the three generations, 82% feel the U.S. healthcare system is broken, and 35% feel it will take 2 years for our economy to recover from COVID-19. 77% have made efforts to support small businesses during COVID-19, while 53% feel that small businesses will recover after the pandemic. 51% have experienced financial insecurity due to COVID-19, which could be why 43% have put off medical care due to cost concerns. Full Multigenerational Survey Results Click here to download the complete multigenerational survey results broken down by generation. Multigenerational Survey Methodology The above multigenerational survey results were gathered through an online poll of 1,595 Americans aged 24-74. The poll was conducted August 6-7, 2020, gleaning representative samples from each state based on population. Samples were weighted for even sample results for Millennials (ages 24-39), Gen X (ages 40-55) and Baby Boomers (ages 56-74). Percentages have been rounded to the nearest full percentage point. Explore More Healthinsurance.com Survey Findings July 2020: Medicare Eligible Seniors Survey Findings: Technology, COVID-19, the 2020 Election and More June 2020: Healthcare Technology, Self-Care and More May 2020: Testing, Mental Health, and More April 2020: Economic Impacts and Health Insurance Trends March 2020: Telemedicine Usage During COVID-19
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Our previous healthinsurance.com surveys have paid close attention to how COVID-19 is impacting our economy, mental health, telemedicine usage, self-care and more. But our most recent survey focuses on an important group: Seniors. In our Medicare Eligible Seniors survey, more than 1,000 Americans ages 64 and up weighed in on life during the Coronavirus pandemic, their use of technology, their Medicare plans, their feelings toward the 2020 election, and more. Medicare Eligible Seniors Survey Results One important takeaway from this survey is that seniors are embracing technology in new ways during the coronavirus pandemic. More than half of the respondents agreed that they have been using technology more during the pandemic. Seniors are using technology for the following: Healthcare: they are receiving virtual care through telemedicine, ordering prescriptions online and monitoring their health through wearables. Information: they are using social media to stay informed on relevant news. Communication: they are staying in touch with family and friends via texting, phone calls, video chat, and social media. Entertainment: they are binge watching their favorite shows on smart TVs and streaming devices. Technology Use Among Seniors in 2020 89% have a smartphone 83% use Facebook the most 75% have a smart TV or streaming device 73% use social media 68% have an iPad or other type of tablet 66% still have cable TV 61% feel they have embraced technology more during the COVID-19 pandemic 54% video chat with their kids and grandkids 50% have video chatted more since the start of COVID-19 47% binge watch shows 43% would wear a device that helped maintain appropriate social distance during the COVID-19 pandemic and alert others if they are too close 42% prefer talking on a cell phone as their method of communication 32% video chat with their friends 30% use social media to staying in touch with friends 29% prefer texting as their method of communication 28% monitor their health using a wearable (Apple Watch, Fitbit, etc.) 22% use social media to stay in touch with family 21% use social media for news 11% started using a smartphone or tablet during the pandemic Life During COVID-19 64% have only left the house to go food shopping or to the pharmacy during COVID-19 62% have you seen their kids or grandkids in person since mid-March 54% have put off a dentist appointment because of COVID-19 27% have left their house whenever they wanted during COVID-19 2020 Medicare Usage and Preferences 97% say their doctor accepts Medicare 84% are not looking to switch doctors because they don’t accept medicare 69% with a Medicare Advantage plan are happy with it 51% think the age to be eligible for Medicare should be lowered to 60 39% look for a Medicare a plan that accepts their doctor 37% think seniors who have a Medicare Advantage plan and who contract COVID-19 are getting better care 26% look for a Medicare plan with low monthly premiums and copays 26% intend to switch from an Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan in the next enrollment period 22% look for a medicare plan that has extra benefits (ie. dental, vision, hearing, fitness programs) 22% intend to change their prescription drug plan in the next enrollment period 20% plan to adjust their Medicare plan during the next annual enrollment period (Oct. 15 - Dec. 7) 12% used the special enrollment period to enroll in Medicare during COVID-19 Prescription Drugs 89% think prescription drug prices are too high 36% spend more than $50 a month on prescription drugs 34% order prescriptions from an online pharmacy Medical Costs 66% are worried about out-of-pocket costs 62% are you worried about receiving an unexpected medical bill 50% have money set aside for their children or family to use for their health needs 36% have put off seeing a doctor because of cost 35% are worried about contracting COVD-19 because they may be hit with a surprise bill Telemedicine Usage 68% of those who haven’t used telemedicine during COVID-19 say its because they haven’t needed to 58% have used telemedicine just once during COVID-19 44% have used telemedicine during COVID-19 43% intend on using telemedicine once COVID-19 passes 30% have used telemedicine once a month during COVID-19 10% used telemedicine before COVID-19 The 2020 Presidential Election 92% say lowering drug prices is an important topic in the upcoming election 84% haven’t seen the country more divided in their lifetime than it is now 68% say the economy and healthcare are the two most important issues to them in the 2020 election 58% will vote via mail-in ballot in November 42% will vote in person in November Methodology The above results were gathered through an online poll of more than 1,000 Medicare eligible Americans ages 64+. The poll was conducted from July 20, 2020 to July 21, 2020, gleaning representative samples from each state based on population. Explore More Healthinsurance.com Survey Findings June 2020: Healthcare Technology, Self-Care and More May 2020: Testing, Mental Health, and More April 2020: Economic Impacts and Health Insurance Trends March 2020: Telemedicine Usage During COVID-19
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Medicare

This is a federal health insurance program primarily for individuals age 65 or older, younger people with disabilities, and for people with End Stage Renal Disease (permanent kidney failure). There are four parts to Medicare - Parts A, B, C and Part D. Part A is for hospital coverage. Part B is for outpatient medical coverage (like doctor office visits). Part C is a Medicare Advantage Plan, and Part D is prescription drug coverage. Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C) are accessible through private insurance companies and must offer the same benefits as Parts A and B of Original Medicare, but the rules are different along with costs and restrictions. They also include more benefits, such as vision, dental, hearing, and health/wellness plans. Another add-on value to Medicare coverage is the purchase of a Medicare supplement or “Medigap” plan that fills the “gaps” in insurance that Medicare doesn’t cover (like a deductible).

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ACA (Obamacare)

Obamacare plans are major medical insurance plans that have the ten essential health benefits required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA).. These plans can be purchased on the federal marketplace or through your state exchange during the annual open enrollment period that runs November 1 - December 15 or during a special enrollment period if you have a qualifying life event that leaves you uninsured. ACA plans are an excellent option for those seeking a plan that includes maternity and mental health benefits, individuals who could qualify for a financial subsidy to reduce the cost of their health insurance, or for those who have a pre-existing condition. Not sure if you qualify? Get a free quote right now.

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Dental Insurance

Dental insurance for many people is part of their employee benefits package. However, if you don’t have access to employee benefits or missed your employer’s annual open enrollment period, purchasing an individual dental insurance plan can help you maintain good dental hygiene while helping you avoid expensive dental costs Dental coverage can include basic cleanings up to major services. See if dental insurance is right for you!

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Hospital Indemnity Insurance

Hospital indemnity insurance are supplemental health insurance services that pay a fixed dollar amount for commonly used medical services, including hospital and doctor office benefits. If you experience a covered medical event, such as a hospital stay, then a hospital indemnity pays a set fee in cash directly to you or the hospital designated by you. More than just hospital insurance, our products can also include supplemental indemnity payments for a critical illness diagnosis or unexpected accidents. Hospital indemnity insurance is not considered an ACA-qualified plan, but it can be used as a supplement to a major medical ACA plan to help cover a deductible or out-of-pocket expenses.

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Short Term Medical Health Insurance

A short-term health plan is temporary health insurance that can be purchased for as little as 30-days up or for up to 364-days to fill an immediate uninsured need.. Plans use the same terminology as major medical insurance, like deductible, coinsurance and copays, but since it is for temporary needs, it does not cover all of the same health benefits that an ACA health plan would, like maternity or substance abuse. The coverage is primarily for unexpected accidents and illnesses that could occur while an individual is waiting to join a permanent major medical plan, which keeps costs lower.

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Telemedicine

Telemedicine is two-way communication platform between a medical professional and a patient, typically through a smartphone or computer. During the conversation, a U.S. board-certified doctor or nurse can diagnose and prescribe medication for an illness in minutes. From the comfort of your home, you can visit with a medical professional 24/7 for most conditions they would typically diagnose in an Urgent Care clinic, saving you both time and money. Find out if telemedicine services are the right fit for you!

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Frequently Asked Questions

The required essential benefits are designed to ensure everyone in the individual and small employer group major medical health insurance markets has comprehensive coverage for specific services in accordance with ACA guidelines. These benefits are:

  • Outpatient services (e.g. office visits)
  • Emergency room services
  • Inpatient services (hospitalization)
  • Maternity
  • Mental health and substance abuse
  • Prescription drugs
  • Rehabilitative and habilitative services (e.g. physical and occupational therapy)
  • Lab services
  • Preventive services (e.g. physicals, mammograms, etc.)
  • Pediatric dental and vision

ACA health insurance is the federally mandated health insurance law of the land, also known as Obamacare. It governs individual and family plans and requires ten minimum essential benefits. Anyone can apply, and those that are under the 400% poverty line can receive a financial subsidy to curb the cost of their health insurance. Enrollment is available November 1-December 15 in most states. If you have a life situation that leaves you uninsured, you might be eligible for the special enrollment period to get coverage.

Short term medical insurance is not ACA insurance. It is temporary insurance for those who need immediate coverage. Like ACA insurance, Short term health insurance includes benefits such as hospital, lab and x-rays, but it does not include all ten of the minimum essential benefits and it does not cover pre-existing conditions.

Many individuals apply for both Medicare Part A and Part B so they have doctor coverage and hospital coverage. However, if you are interested in additional benefit structure and pricing, check out Medicare Advantage Plans, which is known as Part C to see if it fits for your life situation. Medicare Part C includes Part A and B benefits, but is offered through a private health insurance company instead of the federal government and may offer additional benefits and may have some other varying differences. If you take prescription drugs, it’s smart to look into Part D, which is the prescription drug benefit of Medicare.

Indemnity insurance such as a health benefit indemnity (a hospital indemnity often combined with other supplemental insurance services) is not major medical insurance Instead, it provides a cash payment directly to you (or to the provider you identify) when you experience a covered event, like unexpected hospitalization. You can choose how to use your benefit dollars and it helps defray the cost of medical expenses, both the expected like co-pays and deductibles, and the unexpected, like lost wages. Indemnity plans help protect you financially.

Dental insurance is an added benefit that is not covered by your health insurance plan. Cleanings, crowns or root canals are not covered by your health insurance plan. But dental insurance will help ease the cost of these types of medical expenses. However, unless you have employer group health insurance, dental insurance is not available unless you purchase coverage on your own. It’s a good idea to determine what kind of coverage you might need for you and your family.

Telemedicine is low-cost access to U.S. board-certified doctors who can treat symptoms and prescribe medications over the phone or through video chat, just like a visit to Urgent Care. Unlike the doctor's office, you get a personal visit from the comfort of your home 24/7, even on holidays! If you have a high deductible or don't have a doctor's office copay option on your health plan, telemedicine is much more affordable than paying out-of-pocket for a doctor's office visit that takes you away from work or home.

Health insurance can help protect you financially from the medical bills - like an accident or illness diagnosis you were not expecting. Paying for medical care out of pocket 100% can get extremely expensive. Surgical treatment for a broken arm averages $16,000. But with health insurance coverage, you will be able to manage your expenses. Not only does health insurance help you access providers like hospitals and doctors, it helps cover your expenses. Depending on your plan, you may have to meet a deductible and pay a co-pay amount for doctor’s visits, but insurance can cover a significant portion of your insurance bills. For example, the average ACA bronze level plan deductible is $5,900, but there is no lifetime max (e.g. an amount beyond which, insurance doesn’t have to pay). You can secure lower deductibles with higher level ACA plans (silver, gold, platinum) and with Short term health insurance. Short term life insurance plans do have a lifetime maximum, so if choosing a short term plan, check the amount. Often, for a few extra dollars, you can secure a lifetime maximum of $500,000 or more.

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