Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Care Consumer Confidence Index: August 2009 Findings

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Care Consumer Confidence Index (RWJF Index) found that Americans’ confidence in their health insurance coverage and access to health care dropped slightly last month. The RWJF Index fell 1.1 points in August to 96.1, down from 97.2 in July.

Confidence among Medicare eligible seniors continued to slide, dropping 3.6 points to 103.3 in August. Confidence in this group has dropped a combined 14 points over the past two months.

There was also a notable drop in the confidence of young adults in August. The confidence level of adults age 18-34 fell 5.5 points from 102.3 points in July to 96.8 in August.

Other highlights:

  • 52.5% of people are worried that they will not be able to pay for their future health care needs in the event of a serious illness.
  • 48% are worried that they will not be able to afford all of the routine health care services they need.
  • 43.7 % report being worried that they will not be able to afford future prescriptions.
  • 29.7% report being worried that they will go bankrupt from not being able to pay their medical bills.
  • 22.2% of people receiving coverage from public programs are worried about cuts to public programs.
  • 21.3 % report that they delayed needed medical care in the past year due to cost.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Care Consumer Confidence Index (RWJF Index) is a monthly survey that evaluates consumer confidence in American health care. The RWJF index is created by the University of Minnesota's State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC) using data collected as part of the Surveys of Consumers, conducted by the Survey Research Center at the University of Michigan.

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