Media Room

For Immediate Release

Truven Health Analytics-NPR Health Poll Finds Over 56 Percent of Americans Worry of Ebola Outbreak, Opinions on U.S. Response Split

Nearly 8 in 10 Think Travel should be Suspended to Affected Areas

Ann Arbor, MI, Oct. 23, 2014 — More than half of Americans are either somewhat concerned or very concerned that the Ebola virus will spread throughout the United States, according to the Truven Health Analytics-NPR Health Poll.

Truven Health Analytics™ and NPR conduct a monthly poll to gauge attitudes and opinions on a wide range of health issues. During October, the survey asked respondents to share their views and concerns about the Ebola virus. The results showed that 56 percent of Americans have some level of concern about an outbreak in the U.S., an opinion that tended to decrease with increasing age and income.

When asked about the country’s response to the issue, opinions were split. Forty nine percent said they believed the U.S. response to Ebola has been adequate, and 53 percent say the U.S. has taken a leadership role in addressing the virus. Sixty percent say the decision to bring U.S. aid workers back to the country for treatment is the right one.

“Despite being at the center of a national media frenzy, Ebola has not given us reason to panic, ” said Michael Taylor, M.D., chief medical officer at Truven Health Analytics. “Still, as these results have clearly shown, the American people are very concerned. It is of paramount importance that U.S. healthcare system be vigilant and clearly communicates both its preparations and ability to address this challenge.”

The most common opinion respondents expressed was that the U.S. should take measures, such as suspending travel to affected areas like Liberia, to prevent the potential spread of Ebola. Seventy seven percent of respondents shared that viewpoint.

To date, the Truven Health Analytics-NPR Health Poll has explored numerous health topics, including generic drugs, abortion, vaccines, food allergies, and organic and genetically modified foods. NPR's reports on the surveys are archived online at the Shots health blog here.

Truven Health Analytics maintains a library of poll results here.

The Truven Health Analytics-NPR Health Poll is powered by the Truven Health PULSE® Healthcare Survey, the nation’s largest and longest-running independently funded, nationally representative multi-modal poll that collects information about health-related behaviors and attitudes and healthcare utilization from 82, 000 US households annually. Survey questions are developed in conjunction with NPR. The figures in this month's poll are based on 3, 003 participants interviewed from October 1-15, 2014. The margin of error is 1.8 percent.

About NPR NPR is an award-winning, multimedia news organization and an influential force in American life. In collaboration with more than 900 independent public radio stations nationwide, NPR strives to create a more informed public - one challenged and invigorated by a deeper understanding and appreciation of events, ideas and cultures.

About Truven Health Analytics, part of the IBM Watson Health Business

Truven Health Analytics®, part of the IBM Watson Health™ business, provides market-leading performance improvement solutions built on data integrity, advanced analytics and domain expertise. For more than 40 years, our insights and solutions have been providing hospitals and clinicians, employers and health plans, state and federal government agencies, life sciences companies and policymakers, the facts they need to make confident decisions that directly affect the health and well-being of people and organizations in the US and around the world. The company was acquired by IBM in 2016 to help form a new business, Watson Health. Watson Health aspires to improve lives and give hope by delivering innovation to address the world’s most pressing health challenges through data and cognitive insights.

Truven Health Analytics owns some of the most trusted brands in healthcare, such as MarketScan®, 100 Top Hospitals®, Advantage Suite®, Micromedex®, Simpler® and ActionOI®. Truven Health has its principal offices in Ann Arbor, MI, Chicago, IL, and Denver, CO.


Brian Erni
For Truven Health Analytics
J. Roderick, Inc. Public Relations