Health law confusion continues

    The White House issues a new message nearly every week explaining or promoting the federal health law. Despite this communication push, confusion persists

    The health law is big, it’s complicated and it’s being phased in over several years. And, well, most of us are busy.

    Experts say it’s little surprise that many Americans aren’t quite sure about the details or even the status of the plan to overhaul health coverage in America

    Claudia Deane, of the Kaiser Family Foundation, said her group surveys Americans’ views on health care.

    “All the goings-on on Capitol Hill and in the courts in terms of the status of the law, whether it’s been repealed or overturned have sort of confused the public a little bit,” she said. “We found that one in five Americans think the law has been repealed when it has not. It’s still the law of the land.”

    The Kaiser survey suggests that another 26 percent of Americans aren’t sure if the law had been repealed.

    A repeal vote in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives succeeded in January, but the Senate vote in early February failed.

    Officials with the Department of Health and Human Services declined to comment on the survey or White House efforts to sell the benefits of the health law.

    Deane said it’s tough trying to figuring out if Americans have been helped or harmed by the overhaul.

    “People have a hard time interpreting what effects are due to the law and what changes are just due to the health-care marketplace,” she said. “The most common answer is something about cost. We don’t know if that is a cost change due actually to health reform or due just to the fact that health-care costs are going up, so it’s complicated.”

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