In the midst of widespread news coverage of problems with the federal health exchange website, relatively few uninsured Americans (18%) — the primary target population for the exchanges — have so far attempted to visit an exchange website. The percentage is slightly higher, 22%, among uninsured Americans who say they plan to get insurance through the exchanges.
Gallup previously found that less than half of uninsured Americans (44%) who plan to get insurance say they will do so through an exchange, and about one in four say they are more likely to pay a fine instead of getting insurance. These findings help explain the low percentage of the uninsured who have attempted to access the exchange websites.
Still, the fact that less than a quarter of uninsured Americans who say they plan to get insurance through an exchange have visited one so far suggests that other factors are at work. It may be that many uninsured Americans are waiting to try out the health exchange websites until their highly publicized problems are fixed, or they may simply be putting off decisions about getting insurance until later.
The health exchange websites are not only fraught with the technical problems that have led to so much news coverage in recent weeks, but have also generated relatively little interest or use among uninsured Americans — the primary target group for the exchanges. The majority of uninsured Americans are unfamiliar with the exchanges and relatively few have tried to access them to date, even among those who say that eventually, they will most likely get their insurance through an exchange website.
Read the full article at Gallup.com.