Doctor at computerAltarum Institute conducts semiannual surveys to better understand consumer beliefs, practices, and preferences regarding health care.

The spring 2014 Altarum Institute Survey of Consumer Health Care Opinions is the sixth in this ongoing series. Survey respondents included a nationally representative sample of 2,099 adults between the ages of 18 and 64 years old.

Key findings:

  • Similar to prior years, this survey finds strong evidence that consumers want a seat at the table in decisions about their health.
  • Consumers are proactive in learning about their symptoms and medical conditions, but few seek out information on health care costs or quality.
  • A persistent gap exists between consumer attitudes and actions pertaining to health care costs.
  • While most consumers are committed to their current Primary Care Provider (PCP), half would switch if they had to pay any extra monthly premium.
  • Although the vast majority of consumers want to be involved in health care decisions, many typically let the doctor take charge of the visit.
  • Consumers report that they are likely to delay getting care.
  • Most consumers respond to health problems by seeking medical care.
  • Consumers who have experienced medical errors are more likely to seek second opinions and refuse recommended treatments.
  • Consumers with high Altarum Consumer Engagement (ACE) Measure scores are more likely to take an active approach to their health.

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