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Wed Jul 23 08:02:18 SAST 2014

Americans' biggest worry is access to health care: poll

Sapa-AFP | 06 December, 2012 09:11

Access to healthcare and its cost remain Americans’ top medical concerns, two years after President Barack Obama’s reforms were passed, a poll said Wednesday.

Forty-two% of those questioned in the Gallup poll said access or cost were the biggest problems the country faces in terms of health care.

Obama’s reforms, which were upheld this year by the Supreme Court, oblige people to have health insurance. But the reform will not take full effect until 2014, which might help explain the lingering worries, Gallup said.

Access was the most urgent public health problem for 23% of those questioned, while cost was problem number one for 19%.

Not far behind was obesity, which 16% of those polled cited as the most urgent public health problem. Back in 1999, only one% said the same.

The more acute jitters over obesity go hand in hand with a rise in the demographic, which has doubled between 1980 and 2008.

In fourth place, was cancer, health concern number one for 13% of Americans.

In 2001, bio-terrorism held the top slot as the number one public health worry, while from 1987 to 1999 it was AIDS.

This year’s poll was conducted from November 15-18 among 1 015 adults and had a margin of error of four percentage points.

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Wed Jul 23 08:02:18 SAST 2014 ::