Poll Finds Most Doctors (73%) Support Public Option

Via Joseph Shapiro

Among all the players in the health care debate, doctors may be the least understood about where they stand on some of the key issues around changing the health care system. Now, a new survey finds some surprising results: A large majority of doctors say there should be a public option.

When polled, "nearly three-quarters of physicians supported some form of a public option, either alone or in combination with private insurance options," says Dr. Salomeh Keyhani. She and Dr. Alex Federman, both internists and researchers at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, conducted a random survey, by mail and by phone, of 2,130 doctors. They surveyed them from June right up to early September.

Most doctors — 63 percent — say they favor giving patients a choice that would include both public and private insurance. That's the position of President Obama and of many congressional Democrats. In addition, another 10 percent of doctors say they favor a public option only; they'd like to see a single-payer health care system. Together, the two groups add up to 73 percent.

When the American public is polled, anywhere from 50 to 70 percent favor a public option. So that means that when compared to their patients, doctors are bigger supporters of a public option.

Doctors' Support For Public Option 'Broad And Widespread'

The researchers say they found strong support for a public option among all categories of doctors. "We even saw that support being the same whether physicians lived in rural areas or metropolitan areas," says Federman.

"Whether they lived in southern regions of the United States or traditionally liberal parts of the country," says Keyhani, "we found that physicians, regardless — whether they were salaried or they were practice owners, regardless of whether they were specialists or primary care providers, regardless of where they lived — the support for the public option was broad and widespread."

Keyhani says doctors already have experience with government-run health care, with Medicare. And she says the survey shows that, overall, they like it. "We've heard a lot about how the government is standing in between patients and their physician," Keyhani says. "And what we can see is that physicians support Medicare. So I think physicians have sort of signaled that a public option that's similar in design to Medicare would be a good way of ensuring patients get the care that they need."

The survey was published online Monday by the New England Journal of Medicine. It was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, a health care research organization that favors health reform.

AMA Doctors Also Support Public Option

The survey even found widespread support for a public option among doctors who are members of the American Medical Association, a group that's opposed to it. The AMA fears a public option eventually could lead to government putting more limits on doctors' fees.

"The American Medical Association has traditionally been probably the loudest voice for physicians across the United States," says Federman. "And part of our reason for doing this research was really to get at the real voice of physicians as opposed to the voice of one physician organization."

Keyhani and Federman belong to another, smaller group, the National Physicians Alliance. It supports a public option, and Keyhani has spoken publicly about her own support for a public option.

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13 comments:

cris said... / Sep 15, 2009, 7:45:00 PM  

Ya as of yesterday when the rat weasel Waxman changed the bill to give them an additional $250 billion more of our tax money.

You are an idiot to support a public option and the only 19% of all US physicians are members of the AMA. WAKE UP . The issue is clear-all relative facts do not support the prudence of Gov't healthcare. Obama and his control freak radical leftist have nothing! Now they are desperate and have resorted to the 1st chapter of their play book-call anyone who opposes ObamaCare a racist. The identical argument they always use, when they are asked to discuss and support the details of their ulterior motive driven idiocy. NOTE: Have you ever heard any of the Democrat supporters of the Gov't Option ever say that your coverage will actually improve? OF COURSE NOT! The furthest they go is to say that it will not get worse even though it will immediately put us in debt another $2 trillion dollars. If the media didn't have its head so far up Obama's ass, the argument would have been over 2 months ago, when the Democrat Majority voting 100% to opt themselves out of the Government Plan, in favor of the plan they have now: Private insurance coverage for life for both themselves and all of their family members-paid for by us, the tax payer. Therefore, regardless if all private insurance goes out of business immediately once the Government gets involved (has been the case 100% of the time, without exception, in ever Country with Gov't Option)and the premiums for their coverage increases to $10,000 a month it doesn't matter b/c they don't pay for it anyway-WE DO! Ask yourself? What kind of idiot would accept something for themselves which wasn't good enough for the people who wrote it?

Codester said... / Sep 15, 2009, 8:40:00 PM  

cris said... Obama and his control freak radical leftist have nothing! Now they are desperate and have resorted to the 1st chapter of their play book-call anyone who opposes ObamaCare a racist. The identical argument they always use, when they are asked to discuss and support the details of their ulterior motive driven idiocy.

President Jimmy Carter, original son of the South, says much of the GOP opposition to Obama is based on race.

http://is.gd/3jI9f

Codester said... / Sep 15, 2009, 8:45:00 PM  

cris said... all private insurance goes out of business immediately once the Government gets involved (has been the case 100% of the time, without exception, in ever Country with Gov't Option)and the premiums for their coverage increases to $10,000 a month

No, actually Canada and several others still hav private insurance. They have for decades.

Premiums increase to $10K? Avg yearly median premium cost now is $13K.

Codester said... / Sep 15, 2009, 8:46:00 PM  

cris said... when they are asked to discuss and support the details of their ulterior motive driven idiocy.

How is this assertion going for ya so far?

J said... / Sep 16, 2009, 2:40:00 PM  

"45% Of Doctors Would Consider Quitting If Congress Passes Health Care Overhaul"

http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article.aspx?id=506199

"Major findings included:

• Two-thirds, or 65%, of doctors say they oppose the proposed government expansion plan. This contradicts the administration's claims that doctors are part of an "unprecedented coalition" supporting a medical overhaul.

It also differs with findings of a poll released Monday by National Public Radio that suggests a "majority of physicians want public and private insurance options," and clashes with media reports such as Tuesday's front-page story in the Los Angeles Times with the headline "Doctors Go For Obama's Reform."

Nowhere in the Times story does it say doctors as a whole back the overhaul. It says only that the AMA — the "association representing the nation's physicians" and what "many still regard as the country's premier lobbying force" — is "lobbying and advertising to win public support for President Obama's sweeping plan."

Codester said... / Sep 18, 2009, 5:24:00 PM  

J said... "45% Of Doctors Would Consider Quitting If Congress Passes Health Care Overhaul"

Buh-bye little IBD poll that almost was...

IBD Publishes Ludicrous Poll Claiming 45% Of Doctors Would Quit Over Reform
http://is.gd/3qpie

IBD/TIPP Doctors Poll Is Not Trustworthy
http://is.gd/3plQz

J said... / Sep 18, 2009, 5:56:00 PM  

Buh-Bye? Let's see... IBD does a poll that headlines "45% Of Doctors Would Consider Quitting If Congress Passes Health Care Overhaul" and Huffpo comes back and says "IBD Publishes Ludicrous Poll Claiming 45% Of Doctors Would Quit Over Reform".
Obviously, there's a huge difference between "Would Consider Quitting" and "Would Quit", and that author may need to take a class on reading comprehension before he tries to comment on political matters. "Would Quit" is obviously a lot worse than "Would Consider Quitting", so it's an obvious attempt to paint the IBD pollsters in a negative light when they didn't even say that doctors "would quit".

On your second link, he writes:

"The survey was conducted by mail, which is unusual."

On the original story that you linked to, it reads:

"both internists and researchers at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, conducted a random survey, by mail and by phone, of 2,130 doctors."

So I guess if the IBD poll is inaccurate, then I'd expect Nate Silver to criticize the poll you've cited since they use the same faulty mail method that leads to inaccurate results. If he hasn't criticized the Mt Sinai poll yet, then I question his sense of fairness and integrity.

Codester said... / Sep 18, 2009, 6:30:00 PM  

1. The survey was conducted by mail, which is unusual. The only other mail-based poll that I'm aware of is that conducted by the Columbus Dispatch, which was associated with an average error of about 7 percentage points -- the highest of any pollster that we tested.

2. At least one of the questions is blatantly biased: "Do you believe the government can cover 47 million more people and it will cost less money and th quality of care will be better?". Holy run-on-sentence, Batman? A pollster who asks a question like this one is not intending to be objective.

3. As we learned during the Presidntial campaign -- when, among other things, they had John McCain winning the youth vote 74-22 -- the IBD/TIPP polling operation has literally no idea what they're doing. I mean, literally none. For example, I don't trust IBD/TIPP to have competently selected anything resembling a random panel, which is harder to do than you'd think.

4. They say, somewhat ambiguously: "Responses are still coming in." This is also highly unorthodox. Professional pollsters generally do not report results before the survey period is compete.

5. There is virtually no disclosure about methodology. For example, IBD doesn't bother to define the term "practicing physician", which could mean almost anything. Nor do they explain how their randomization procedure worked, provide the entire question battery, or anything like that.

My advice would be to completely ignore this poll. There are pollsters out there that have an agenda but are highly competent, and there are pollsters that are nonpartisan but not particularly skilled. Rarely, however, do you find the whole package: that special pollster which is both biased and inept. IBD/TIPP is one of the few exceptions.

DAMN!! That's gotta hurt.

http://is.gd/3plQz

If you haven't heard about Nate Silver lately... you should look him up. Few ever question his analysis of polling science methodology. Whether or not YOU "question his sense of fairness and integrity" doesn't much matter one iota to me.

J said... / Sep 18, 2009, 7:09:00 PM  

"DAMN!! That's gotta hurt."

LOL, howso?. If Nate Silver doesn't like the IBD poll for using mail, then he shouldn't like your Mt Sinai poll either, should he?


And is there a difference between "Would Quit" and "Would Consider Quitting"?

As usual, you don't answer questions

Codester said... / Sep 18, 2009, 8:19:00 PM  

J said... "As usual, you don't answer questions

Said the guy responding to 1 out of 5 disputes in polling methodology.

J said... / Sep 18, 2009, 8:41:00 PM  

Answer my two questions, and I'll gladly address the others.

Codester said... / Sep 18, 2009, 10:35:00 PM  

I had to dig and dig to see how your comparison of "would quit" or "would consider" was even being asked or referred to in terms of methodology or the wording of questions that were asked in the polls.

Then I came back here to read your "question" again and finally figured out you were only referring to the WORDING OF THE FUCKING HUFFPO TITLE??

WHO GIVES A RAT'S ASS? What the fuck does that have to do with the goddamn integrity of the poll?

This is what I'm talking about with conservative "trivialities"... you dumbasses obsess over the most needless irrelevant shit I've ever seen.

After that, dude... piss off. I don't give a damn what your (equally ludicrous) responses are going to be... to actual legitimate polling science disputes.

God damn... that was a special kinda stupid right there. You gotta be BRED for that kinda dumb.

J said... / Sep 18, 2009, 11:59:00 PM  

"WHO GIVES A RAT'S ASS? What the fuck does that have to do with the goddamn integrity of the poll?"

It has everything to do with the integrity of the author and your integrity since you won't answer the very simple question. My question about the mailing went unanswered as well..typical.


It is not trival, it represents what leftists try to do with conservatives all the time: misrepresent our positions CONSTANTLY. In the left's world, 2+2=5 and "would quit" and "would consider" are a triviality. The writer deliberately misrepresented the IBD poll in an intellectually dishonest fashion in order to make the poll sound unbelievable. If I'm so stupid, answer the two questions since you are obviously so much smarter than I am.

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