Most rural Nebraskans do not understand the new health care reform law. Over four in ten rural Nebraskans (42%) say they don’t understand it at all and almost one-third (31%) say not too well. Only five percent say they understand it very well.

Unfortunately, persons who will likely be affected by this new law (the uninsured) do not feel they understand it. Almost one-half (45%) of the uninsured say they do not understand the new health care reform law at all and almost one-third (29%) say not too well. Only 12 percent of the uninsured understand the new law somewhat well and four percent say very well.

All in all, how well do you feel you understand what’s in the new health care reform law (the Affordable Care Act)?

 

Not at all

Not too well

Somewhat well

Very well

 Unsure

All rural Nebraskans

42%

31%

17%

5%

5%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uninsured

45%

29%

12%

4%

10%

Insured

42%

31%

18%

5%

5%

 

Since many rural Nebraskans don’t understand the new health care reform law, from which sources do they anticipate getting information about it? Most rural Nebraskans anticipate getting information regarding the new health care reform law from the media (57%). Many rural Nebraskans expect to get information about the new law from their employer (37%), their doctor (34%), the Internet (34%), their insurance agent (32%) and friends or relatives (31%).

Which of the following sources do you anticipate getting information from regarding the new health care reform law?

 

% selecting each

Media

57

Your employer

37

Internet

34

Your doctor

34

Insurance agent

32

Friends or relatives

31

Your pharmacist

20

Government or health care agency/health care navigator

16

Financial planner/accountant

8

Other

5

Local University of Nebraska Extension office

4

 

Many uninsured persons anticipate getting information from the following:  the media (50%), friends or relatives (42%), the Internet (35%), their doctor (28%), and their insurance agent (28%). The quality of the information obtained from their top three sources (media, friends and relatives, and the Internet) could be questionable. This is concerning since so many of the uninsured say they do not currently understand the law.

Survey Methods

This study is based on 2,317 responses from Nebraskans living in the 84 non-metropolitan counties in the state.[1] A self-administered questionnaire was mailed in March and April to 6,320 randomly selected households. Metropolitan counties not included in the sample were Cass, Dakota, Dixon, Douglas, Lancaster, Sarpy, Saunders, Seward and Washington.

A 37% response rate was achieved using the total design method (Dillman, 1978).

Since younger residents have typically been under-represented by survey respondents and older residents have been over-represented, weights were used to adjust the sample to match the age distribution in the nonmetropolitan counties in Nebraska (using U.S. Census figures from 2010).

The margin of error for this study is plus or minus two percent.

[1] In the spring of 2013, the Grand Island area (Hall, Hamilton, Howard and Merrick Counties) was designated a metropolitan area. The mailing list for this survey was already purchased prior to this designation so those four counties were included in our sample and in the data presented here.

For more information about the Nebraska Rural Poll, click here.

The complete report can be viewed here.