Healthy Young Adults Could See Insurance Soar

There are a lot of Americans who should be helped when it comes to the new health care laws taking effect in 2014.  People with pre-existing conditions will have to be offered coverage from health insurance companies or will be able to find it in state run exchanges.  Older Americans who have often been charged up to five times the amount for their coverage as their younger counterparts cannot be charged more than three times more now.  And many Americans who simply didn’t think they could afford health insurance will likely be able to find better health quotes and be helped with government subsidies after the full law goes into effect.  But the youngest, healthiest Americans could possibly be hurt the most as their health insurance rises to make up for all of the others.  This information comes from N.C. Aizenman of The Washington Post’s article, “Young Adults Face Health Insurance Rate Scare.”

Insurance companies are worried that they will face a lot of criticism when rates rise, so they are trying to prepare by warning consumers about the “rate shock” that is to come.  They blame this on the fact that they will have to offer customers more comprehensive coverage, they have to offer plans to people who are already sick (ie have pre-existing conditions,) and they can’t charge the elderly sky high rates anymore.  While supporters of the law do understand this, they argue that using the term “rate shock” is just a scare tactic and point out the fact that government subsidies will help pay for part of people’s health insurance increases.  A lot of healthy people in their 20s purposefully have plans with less coverage, but will now be forced into carrying more comprehensive plans that will cost them more, whether they like it or not.  Rates are not likely to double for those with employer sponsored health plans, but individual and small group coverage rates could jump anywhere from 10% to more than 50%.

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