Consumer Concerns Aired At Citizen’s Health Care Meeting

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Central Florida consumers attending the recent community meeting hosted by the Winter Park Health Foundation and conducted by the Citizen’s Health Care Working Group, voiced strong concerns about the state of the nation’s health care system.

More than half of the 130-plus participants described the U.S. health care system in a “state of crisis,” while another 43 percent said they felt it had “major problems.” No one said it was problem-free.

These and other local comments will be combined with those from consumers around the country to produce a set of recommendations to be presented to the President and the U.S. Congress.

The Citizen’s Health Care Working Group, mandated by the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003, is assigned the task of gathering consumer feedback from around the country on health care concerns and suggestions for improvement. It is visiting over 20 communities throughout the country from now until June.

When it came to identifying difficulties in getting health care that needed to be addressed, “navigating the health care system and getting past the gatekeepers” was tops with 24 percent. Another 15 percent said “not stong enough community-based system.”

Participants also were asked about what they felt “should be the MOST important priority for public spending to reach the goal of health care that works for all Americans.” About 33 percent said “guaranteeing that all Americans have health insurance;” 31 percent said “guaranteeing that all Americans get health care when they need it, through public ‘safety net’ programs (if they can not afford it).”

View the full report from the Orlando meeting.