Are politics getting in the way of insurance enrollment?

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has been highly politicized, and a recent study published by the National Bureau of Economic Research examines whether political views influence an individual's decision to purchase health insurance under the PPACA.

 The study was based on survey results from a sample of 4,169 residents of Washington state ages 18 to 64. The survey was conducted from December 2013 through January 2014.

Seven percent of survey respondents expressed they intend to purchase insurance through a healthcare exchange established under the PPACA, while 20 percent of respondents were unsure if they will enroll.

By asking politically-driven questions, the researchers were able to determine some of the factors influencing the respondents' decisions to enroll or not enroll in coverage through the online marketplace.

The study revealed 23 percent of the uninsured population blamed the Democrats and/or President Barack Obama for the government shutdown in 2013 compared to 14 percent among the insured population.

The study also found the uninsured population who blamed all parties or only the Republicans for the government shutdown of 2013 were more likely to purchase insurance through the exchanges than those who blamed the Democrats.

With the uninsured who blame the Democrats for the government shutdown being unlikely to purchase insurance through the exchanges, the study results evidence the individual mandate would have a minimal effect on enrollment for the portion of the uninsured population who are politically against the Democrats.

More articles on the PPACA:

PPACA enrollment expected to tumble: 5 facts and observations
Consumer opinions about the PPACA and U.S. healthcare: 10 things to know
Physicians dissatisfied with contracts under PPACA

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