<p>Bill McInturff &ndash; a highly regarded pollster and political strategist with Public Opinion Strategies &ndash; conducts the surveys behind the NACDS&rsquo; Victory Vision opinion research program.</p>
<p>While preparing for the Summer 2014 to examine pharmacy-issue perceptions among likely voters and civically minded Americans, NACDS asked McInturff a casual question that drew an illuminating response &ndash; one worth sharing on NACDS.org.</p>
<p>The question was this: &ldquo;International issues seem to dominate the news at this moment &ndash; from Iraq, to Afghanistan, to combating terrorism. What does that mean for the advocacy strategies of a group like NACDS &ndash; which focuses on domestic policy issues and healthcare specifically?&rdquo;</p>
<p>McInturff responded:</p>
<p><em>Events around the globe are capturing the headlines, but it continues to be events here at home that are capturing the attention of American voters.</em></p>
<p><em>There are certainly broad trends being reflected in American attitudes about engagement around the world:</em></p>
<li><em style="text-indent: -0.25in;">A sharply higher percentage of Americans are saying the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were &ldquo;not worth it,&rdquo; with for the first time, a plurality of Republicans agreeing with this assessment.</em></li>
<li><span style="text-indent: -0.25in;">S</span><em style="text-indent: -0.25in;">ince the question was first asked a generation ago, the highest percentage of Americans ever are saying that America should be &ldquo;less involved&rdquo; around the world.</em></li>
<li><em style="text-indent: -0.25in;">Americans oppose any proposal that once again introduces American combat troops into Iraq.</em></li>
<p><em>But, while those trends are important, and certainly these international news stories are important, Americans continue to have a true north on the compass of what&rsquo;s important to them: the economy and jobs and healthcare.</em></p>
<p><em>In one recent national survey, almost half of Americans said &ldquo;the economy and jobs&rsquo; was the most important problem, with roughly three out of ten mentioning &ldquo;healthcare&rdquo; as the second major issue facing the country. Any of the international issues or the threat of terrorism was mentioned by less than one out of five respondents.</em></p>
<p><em>There is one enduring impulse &ndash; what matters is what&rsquo;s closest to home for the voter, their job, their economic security and healthcare.</em></p>
<p><em>It is easy to measure the incredible personal salience of the healthcare issue:&nbsp; In five years of polling for NBC/WSJ and CNBC, the topic which people say they were paying the most attention to was the rollout of the Affordable Care Act. &nbsp;When asked what they are personally most concerned about, people frequently put healthcare costs and coverage on par with any other issue.&nbsp; We care about healthcare because it touches our lives directly.</em></p>
<p><em>So, from an NACDS perspective, all of this just serves as counsel to remember that when the headlines from around the globe fade, we will once again quickly go back to a focus on the same topics &ndash; the economy and healthcare. The implantation of the Affordable Care Act will continue to be a significant focus in the healthcare debate over the next few years. The Association&rsquo;s efforts to align themselves around a patient focused &ldquo;new pharmacy&rdquo; role in our healthcare system matches with what consumers&rsquo; &nbsp;expectations are, but, NACDS members should always recognize the consumer scrutiny of each major player in our healthcare system will continue.</em></p>
<p>Findings from the 2014 NACDS Victory Vision opinion research project will be described in conjunction with the NACDS Total Store Expo, to be held August 23-26, 2014, in Boston. </p>