Medicare What's Buzzing

Americans with Medicare are most satisfied with our health care system

Written by Diane Archer

According to two Gallup polls over the last year, people over 65 with Medicare are more satisfied with their health insurance than people under 65 with commercial insurance.

One poll found that people with government-provided health insurance, including people with Medicare and VA coverage, are more satisfied with their health care coverage than other Americans.  Almost four out of five people 65 and older are satisfied with their treatment by the health care system (79 percent of people with Medicare, Medicaid and VA coverage) as compared with about three out of five people between 18 and 45 (61-66 percent).

More specifically, people without health insurance are the least satisfied with the health care system (36 percent). People with military or veterans coverage are the most satisfied (77 percent) and people with Medicare or Medicaid are the next most satisfied (76 percent).For this survey, Gallup did not separate out satisfaction rates for people newly insured in the health insurance exchanges.  They plan to do so in future polls as soon as practicable.

The survey also does not speak to the reasons why people over 65 are more satisfied with the health care system than the rest of the population.  Joe Baker, president of the Medicare Rights Center, speculates it’s because Medicare and Medicaid coverage are easier to use than private insurance and in most cases provides better protection against financial risk.  “For sure, Congress can improve Medicare.  But, compared with the hassles of referrals and huge copays and deductibles with private insurance, Medicare is relatively simple.”

The second survey reveals again that people over 65 are more satisfied (79 percent) with our health care system than any one else.  It further shows that people with health insurance are far more satisfied with the health care system (70 percent) than people without health insurance (37 percent). Interesting, Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents are more satisfied with the health care system (74 percent) than Republicans and those who lean Republican (60 percent).



  • Instead of the Affordable Care Act, we should have made every one eligible for Medicare. Some Senator from Montana would not allow it to be considered and many did not want to put the insurance companies out of business. Both bad then and both bad now and forever.

    • If private insurers cannot exist on same profit margins and CEO incomes as a “typical, average company,” then they should go out of business!

  • It’s not Medicare advantage, it’s medicare disadvantage. You have a co-pay on everything. with original Medicare you can get a supplemental policy that covers all of the 20% medicare doesn’t cover. It may cost a little more, but it pays all of the bill. I find that it is much easier to pay a set amount each month, as me health deteriorates with age..

  • Our healthcare system is horrible. The ACA takes away someone’s tax return refund and makes the person pay back everything that was supplemented plus some. People are forced into paying a fine if they don’t sign up and when they do they my son had to pay back everything and then some. This country is going to hell. It’s all about corporate and not about the people. I’m so disgusted.

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