Poll Shows Widespread Confusion, Misinformation About ACA

 A new poll released Tuesday is covered by a few national sources, mainly because its implications underscore the Obama Administration’s struggles with implementing the Affordable Care Act. The poll found widespread confusion and misinformation about the law across the US. For example, over 40% of those surveyed believed the ACA was no longer law.

        The Washington Post (5/1, Kliff, 489K) “Wonkblog” reports on the new Kaiser Family Foundation poll, released Tuesday, demonstrates “what a challenge the Obama administration faces in implementing its signature health-care law.” Specifically, the survey found that “fewer than six in 10 Americans know that the Obamacare law is still on the books. Seven percent think the Supreme Court struck it down; 12 percent say Congress repealed Obamacare.” To sum it up, the blog says that “before a deluge of public outreach, set to begin this summer, kicks off,” Americans “do not know a lot” about the law.
        NBC News (5/1, Montanaro) reports further, “the law continues to be viewed more negatively than positively, with just 35 percent saying they have a favorable view and 40 percent saying they have an unfavorable one. But the prolonged implementation, complexity of the law, and messaging by opponents has aided in the confusion.”

CDC: 13% Of US Adults Under 65 May Skip Meds To Save Money

USA Today (4/9, Kennedy, 1.71M) reports, “People younger than 65 are twice as likely to skip medications than older Americans, according to a study released today by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The new CDC study found that about 13% of the Americans younger than 65 did not take their medications as prescribed to save money, while 6% of the older group skipped medications.” Approximately “6% of both groups tried alternative therapies to avoid prescription drug costs.”
Bloomberg News (4/9, Edney) reports that “Americans spent $45 billion out-of-pocket on retail prescription drugs in 2011, the CDC said. The Affordable Care Act is expected to expand access in 2014 when medication coverage is considered an essential benefit of any health plan offered in new insurance marketplaces called exchanges.”

Device Placed Around Lower Esophageal Sphincter May Benefit GERD Patients

The Florida Times-Union (2/21, Patton, 100K) reports that “a device called the LINX Reflux Management System, a ring of tiny magnetic beads that are surgically placed around the lower esophageal sphincter, preventing stomach acid from leaking back into the esophagus,” may benefit patients with GERD, according to a study published online in the New England Journal of Medicine. The Times-Union points out that “roughly 1 in 3 people in the United States suffers from GERD, the American Gastroenterological Association estimates.”

        MedPage Today (2/21, Gever) reports, “With 100 patients having the device implanted via laparoscopic surgery, 64 achieved the primary endpoint for treatment success, defined as either normalized acid exposure in the esophagus or a reduction in acid exposure of at least 50% after 1 year.” Researchers also found that “more than 90 patients met key secondary endpoints, including a reduction of at least 50% in the use of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), as well as improvement of at least 50% in quality-of-life scores relative to baseline while not taking PPIs.” HealthDay (2/21, Norton) also covers the story.