By Consumers for Quality Care, on July 27, 2022
For Immediate Release
July 27, 2022
New Research Highlights Concern Among Colorado Voters Over Rising Health Care Costs
74% of Colorado Voters Agree the Costs of Health Care are Going up More than Other Things They Need
Denver, Colorado – A new survey of Colorado voters from Impact Research and Keating Research, on behalf of Consumers for Quality Care (CQC), reveals voters see high out-of-pocket costs as the biggest issue in the state’s health care system. Coloradans are ready to support politicians who make lowering out-of-pocket costs a priority. Read more about the survey here.
“Coloradans are tired of insurers nickel and diming consumers,” said the Hon. Donna Christensen, CQC board member, physician, and former Member of Congress. “Rising monthly premiums, deductibles, and other out-of-pocket costs have led to so many patients being plagued with thousands of dollars in medical debt that often goes into collections. It’s time for insurance to act like insurance and for our lawmakers to prioritize lowering costs and improving access to quality care.”
Colorado voters’ number one concern when it comes to health care is that out-of-pocket costs are too high, and deductibles are the costs that people struggle with the most. Eighty-four percent of Colorado voters believe it is more important now than ever that insurance cover mental health care, but more than half (59%) think it is difficult to find mental health providers that are affordable or covered by insurance.
More insights from the research include:
- 74% agree that the costs of health care are going up by even more than other things they need.
- By a more than a 3-to-1 margin, voters’ main concern in health care is that out-of-pocket costs are too high (35%).
- High deductibles are the biggest specific pain point when it comes to cost (37%), especially for those with private insurance (46%).
- Over half of voters (54%) have either had their household finances seriously affected by medical debt or are close with someone who has.
- 59% of voters agree it’s difficult to find mental health providers that are covered by insurance.
Coloradans want their elected officials to take action to lower out-of-pocket health care costs. Over 7-in-10 voters (72%) say they are more likely to support a candidate who makes reducing health care costs their top priority, including strong majorities of persuadable voters (65%).
When it comes to lowering health care costs, Colorado voters think the following measures would be effective:
- Capping insurance deductibles at a level that is low enough that people don’t go into debt when getting the health care they need (64%).
- Capping the amount health insurers can charge patients for deductibles, copays and other out-of-pocket costs (69%).
- Requiring health insurers and pharmacy benefit managers to pass the rebates or discounts they receive from drug companies on to patients (74%).
With the American Rescue Plan’s health insurance subsidies in danger of expiring, three-quarters (75%) of Colorado voters want Congress to act to extend the discounts. Action by Congress would forestall dramatic premiums increases for families and individuals who purchase insurance on federal and state health insurance exchanges.
“Families are fed up with high deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs,” said Chris Keating of Keating Research. “They want to see thoughtful fixes from lawmakers and insurance companies that reduce out-of-pocket costs and increase access to mental health care. Coloradans are willing to support candidates who make those policies a priority.”
The Impact Research/Keating Research poll on behalf of CQC was conducted June 24-29, 2022. The online survey sampled 602 registered voters in Colorado. Overall results were weighted to reflect the composition of registered voters in the state.
About Consumers for Quality Care
Consumers for Quality Care (CQC) is a coalition of advocates and former policymakers working to provide a voice for patients in the health care debate as they demand better care. CQC is led by a board of directors that includes the Honorable Donna Christensen, physician and former Member of Congress; Jim Manley, former senior advisor to Senators Edward Kennedy and Harry Reid; Jason Resendez, community advocate and health care strategist; and Mary L. Smith, former CEO of Indian Health Service.