New Poll Finds Voters Want the Right to Shop for Health Care

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Naples, FL – A new poll, released today by the Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA), found that voters support a new health care reform that gives patients the right to know how much procedures will cost ahead of time so they can shop for the best option. The reform, called Right to Shop, empowers patients with cost-transparency and more options, and rewards them with shared savings for shopping for care.

The poll comes on the heels of Maine passing a unanimous bipartisan version of Right to Shop in 2017 and significant state legislative interest in 2018 with up to 15 states considering bills similar to the Maine reform.

The poll concluded that a majority of voters, regardless of party affiliation, value transparency and want the right to know what non-emergency procedures will cost so they can shop for the best value. Likewise, 72 percent of voters support the right to pick lower-cost out-of-network providers, giving patients more options. The poll also found that a majority of all voters support rewarding patients directly when they shop to save money with high-value providers.

Recent analysis has shown that price increases have outpaced the need for care. According to the Health Care Cost Institute, between 2012 and 2016, prescription drug prices increased by 25 percent while their use grew by only 1.8 percent. Similarly, emergency department prices grew by 30 percent while visits increased by only two percent.

According to FGA CEO and President Tarren Bragdon, the poll results are indicative of consumers needing relief from rising health care costs and limited choices.

“Consumers demand choices and transparency in nearly every purchase they make, so why should their health care be any different? The cost of health care and health insurance continues to rise at an unsustainable rate, and patients need relief. The results from this poll show that patients are ready for that relief—in a new, innovative way,” said Bragdon. “Policymakers would be wise to use this data to inform the legislation they advance in the coming months. Their constituents want—and need—reform.”

The full results of the poll can be viewed here.

The Foundation for Government Accountability is a non–profit, multi–state think tank that specializes in health care, welfare, and regulatory reform. To learn more, visit TheFGA.org.

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