Public Agenda/USA Today/Ipsos Hidden Common Ground Survey on Health Care

Where Americans agree on improving health care

The author(s)
  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs
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Washington, DC, February 5, 2020 – This report draws on a Public Agenda/USA Today/Ipsos Hidden Common Ground nationally representative survey of American adults as well as four focus groups exploring the views and values of the American public on health care, including how much change people think the health care system needs, their goals and priorities for changing it, and their views on various proposals for doing so. 

The research finds that nearly all Americans across the political spectrum want the health care system to change and  largely agree on what the goals for the health care system ought to be -- starting with making it more affordable and ensuring that people are not penalized for pre-existing conditions. However, when asked to consider four different approaches to health care reform, partisan divides emerge. Please visit to read the full report.



This Public Agenda/USA Today/Ipsos Poll was conducted December 19th-26th, 2019 by Ipsos Public Affairs KnowledgePanel® – a division of Ipsos. This poll was based on a nationally-representative probability sample of adults age 18 or older (n=1,020)

The survey was conducted using the web-enabled KnowledgePanel®, which is the largest and most well-established online panel that is representative of the adult US population. Our recruitment process employs a scientifically developed addressed-based sampling methodology using the latest Delivery Sequence File of the USPS – a database with full coverage of all delivery points in the US. Households are randomly selected from all available households in the U.S. Persons in these households are invited to join and participate in the web-enabled KnowledgePanel®. For those potential panel members who do not already have internet access, Ipsos provides a tablet and internet connection at no cost to the panel member. Those who join the panel and who are selected to participate in a survey are sent a unique password-protected log-in used to complete surveys online. As a result of our recruitment and sampling methods, samples from KnowledgePanel cover all households regardless of their phone or internet status and provide fully representative online samples to the research community.

The survey was weighted to adjust for gender by age, race, education, Census region by metropolitan status, household income and language proficiency. The above design weights for KP respondents were then raked to the following geodemographic distributions of the 18 and over adult population.  The needed benchmarks were obtained from the 2019 March Supplement of the Current Population Survey (CPS).  Moreover, we used the 2018 American Community Survey (ACS) to obtain language proficiency benchmarks to adjust weights for Hispanic respondents.

  • Gender (Male and Female) by Age (18-29, 30-44, 45-59, 60+)
  • Race-Ethnicity (White/Non-Hispanic, Black/Non-Hispanic, Other/Non-Hispanic, Hispanic, 2+ Races/Non-Hispanic)
  • Census Region (Northeast, Midwest, South, and West) by Metropolitan Status (Metro and Non-Metro)
  • Education (Less than High School, High School, Some College, Bachelor or Higher)
  • Household Income (Under $25K, $25K-$49,999, $50K-$74,999, $75K-$99,999, $100K-$149,999, $150K and Over)
  • Language Proficiency (Non-Hispanic, English Proficient Hispanic, Bilingual Hispanic, Spanish Proficient Hispanic)

The margin of sampling error among the total sample of adults age 18 or older is plus or minus 3.3 percentage points at the 95% confidence level, the Republican sample is plus or minus 6.2 percentage points, the Democrat sample is plus or minus 5.7 percentage points, the Independent sample is plus or minus 6.7 percentage points, and the Apolitical sample is plus or minus 9.5 percentage points. The margin of sampling error takes into account the design effect, which was plus or minus 1.18 percentage points. The margin of sampling error is higher and varies for results based on sub-samples. In our reporting of the findings, percentage points are rounded off to the nearest whole number. As a result, percentages in a given table column may total slightly higher or lower than 100%. In questions that permit multiple responses, columns may total substantially more than 100%, depending on the number of different responses offered by each respondent.


For more information on this news release, please contact:

Chris Jackson
Vice President, US Public Affairs
+1 202 420-2025
[email protected]


About Ipsos

Ipsos is the world’s third largest market research company, present in 90 markets and employing more than 18,000 people.

Our passionately curious research professionals, analysts and scientists have built unique multi-specialist capabilities that provide true understanding and powerful insights into the actions, opinions and motivations of citizens, consumers, patients, customers or employees. We serve more than 5000 clients across the world with 75 business solutions.

Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos is listed on the Euronext Paris since July 1st, 1999. The company is part of the SBF 120 and the Mid-60 index and is eligible for the Deferred Settlement Service (SRD).

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The author(s)
  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs