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Public Opinion and the Passage of the Medicare Bill

The early days of public opinion research captured Americans’ response to the first major efforts by the U.S. government to provide health care to its citizens, an undertaking that saw success in the passage of Medicare in 1965. […]

New to the Archive: AARP’s Brain Health Survey

AARP’s Fall 2015 Brain Health Survey  provides fascinating insights into what Americans believe affects mental sharpness and what actions they are taking to protect their own brain health. Are Americans worried about cognitive decline? Do they think there’s anything they can do to prevent it? Do they take vitamins, get exercise, or do puzzles to help their mental faculties? Do they talk to their doctors about these issues? Has someone close to them suffered from […]

New to the Archive: HSPH/RWJF Subethnicities Survey 2007

The Harvard School of Public Health/Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Subethnicities Survey 2007 covered public health topics and featured an unusual sample of the many diverse ethnicities of origin in the United States. […]

Resources for Understanding the Flint Water Crisis

Water Crisis: Worry and a Lack of Trust
Two critical issues inform the public response to the Flint water crisis: worries about drinking water and a lack of trust in government. Read Worry and a Lack of Trust.
Perceptions of Health Effects of Pollution
There can be many causes of problems with a person’s health. How important do you think each of the following is as a cause of such problems? How about…being exposed to air, water, or […]

Water Crisis: Worry and a Lack of Trust

Headlines about lead poisoning from contaminated water in Flint, Michigan ask how such a thing could happen here. Americans, however, may be somewhat less than surprised that U.S. drinking water could be contaminated. Polling shows that, though a crisis on the scale of Flint’s may be shocking, many Americans have long held concerns about drinking water – and low levels of trust in the government charged with protecting its safety.
Worried about water
Concerns about water quality […]

Kaiser Family Foundation: HIV/AIDS at 30

As the HIV/AIDS epidemic marked its thirtieth year, the Kaiser Family Foundation released a major national survey – their eighth on the topic since 1995 – to better understand the evolution of public opinion toward the disease and the national efforts to prevent and treat it.

Dataset Abstract: Kaiser Family Foundation 2011 Survey of Americans on HIV/AIDS
Report: HIV/AIDS At 30 by the Kaiser Family Foundation
Toplines: HIV/AIDS At 30 by the Kaiser Family Foundation

Prescription Painkiller Abuse – HSPH/Boston Globe Poll

The CDC estimates that almost two million people abused painkillers in the year 2013, and everyday seven thousand people go to the emergency room for misusing these drugs. A new Harvard School of Public Health/Boston Globe asks questions about people’s opinions of and experiences with prescription painkiller abuse. Does prescription painkiller abuse lead to further drug use? Should insurance programs cover treatment programs? What are the causes of prescription painkiller abuse?

The data was collected from […]

Public Attitudes about Birth Control

Fifty years ago, just five years after the FDA approved the first birth control pill, the Supreme Court struck down a Connecticut state law that prohibited the use of “any drug, medicinal article, or instrument for the purpose of preventing conception,” thereby making birth control legal nationwide for married couples. Public opinion was on the Court’s side in Griswold v. Connecticut, but public controversies over contraceptives have continued to this day. A history of public […]

What Shapes Health?

When people say that they’re healthy, what do they mean? What external factors can cause health problems, and what is it exactly that makes a person healthy? In this HSPH/Robert Wood Johnson Foundation/NPR Poll, find out what America believes shapes a person’s overall well-being. Personal habits, ways to improve health, and childhood factors influencing health are all featured in this survey. Demographic questions about weight, smoking habits, and insurance coverage are also included.

The data was collected […]

Attitudes about “test-tube” babies