Posts Tagged ‘individual coverage’

Young Americans Want Health Insurance & Think It’s Important

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Since the Affordable Care Act passed, more and more Americans seem to have become dissenters against it.  When young and healthy people enter into the health insurance system, costs go down for everyone else.  One of the main arguments that we’ve been hearing against the ACA is that young people won’t go get health insurance because they think they are invincible, so costs will just be higher for everyone else.  But according to “Young Adults Want Health Insurance, Don’t Feel ‘Invincible,’ New Obamacare Poll Shows,” young adults desire health insurance and don’t think they are too healthy to need it.  The Huffington Post article by Jeffrey Young discusses recent data found by the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation in a phone poll.  These study results could have an important impact on the Affordable Care Act and how it changes the face of American health insurance.

Not only do young people tend to have lower income than older people, they are also uninsured at much higher rates.  Despite skeptics’ thoughts, this survey found that 77% of 18-25 year olds find health insurance to be important to them.  In the same age group, 76% feel that they need health insurance.  Interestingly, 71% of people aged 26-30 believe that health insurance is important to them and 74% think that they need health insurance.  When you look at all ages combined, 87% of people think that health insurance is important and 88% think they need health insurance.  Only 11% of all ages think that they are too healthy to need health insurance, while around 25% of the young age groups think that.  While this survey shows that older people do think health insurance is more important than younger people do, the majority of young people still believe it is important and that they need health insurance.

Once health insurance coverage is mandated, those who don’t get health coverage at work will be looking for cheap health insurance in President Obama’s health insurance exchanges.  Some worry that young Americans will be paying more for that individual coverage than they would if they got health insurance in the individual market now because of all of the other changes being mandated.  As insurers are forced to cover people with pre-existing conditions and have limits on how much they can charge older people for coverage, will young Americans bear the burden of health insurance costs?  Multiple studies show that around 2/3 of young Americans will qualify for a government tax credit to help pay for their health insurance.  Even with the number of people who will be helped by the health care changes and the tax credits offered, only 35% of those surveyed have a favorable opinion of the Affordable Care Act.  The more young people who obtain health insurance, the better it will be for the system as a whole.

Presidential Debate Rages On When it Comes to Health Insurance

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

In the wake of the second Presidential debate last night, it’s as good a time as any to discuss the differences between President Obama and Mitt Romney when it comes to health care.  Insurance News Net’s “Report: Romney Vs. Obama’s Health Plans” summarizes a recent report from the Commonwealth Fund.  This report, “Healthcare in the 2012 Presidential Election: How the Obama and Romney Plans Stack Up,” says that Romney’s plans would leave 72 million people without health insurance by 2022.  I’m not sure Governor Romney would agree with this number, but the Commonwealth Fund’s report took into account the proposals of each Presidential candidate to fix the problems in our healthcare system.  They then estimated the amount of Americans who would be uninsured under both plans, divided up by age and income.

Economist Johnathan Gruber performed an analysis of the Affordable Care Act, along with an analysis of two Romney proposals in order to determine the number of uninsured Americans there would be under each plan.  Romney’s plans include providing states Medicaid block grants and offering tax incentives for Americans who buy their own individual coverage of health insurance.  When you look at Americans 19 and under, 6 million would be uninsured under Obama’s Affordable Care Act compared to 17.9 million under Romney’s plans.  The Affordable Care Act would leave 3.3 million middle-class families uninsured, while 17.7 million would be uninsured under Romney’s plans.  Families of at least 4 making less than $32,000 a year would be the hardest hit.  Obama’s plans leave 17.2 million of them uninsured and Romney’s will leave 38.7 million without health insurance.

Under the Affordable Care Act, those purchasing health insurance through exchanges or individual companies like Aultcare are estimated to spend around 9.1% of their income on their health care costs.  Under Governor Romney’s health plans that repeal the Affordable Care Act, individuals are estimated to spend either 14.1% or 18.1% (depending on potential tax breaks) on their health care costs.  This economic report doesn’t take other changes that could be made by either President into account, so job growth and Medicare changes could effect these statistics differently.  But it is interesting to see the comparison between the two potential outcomes taking only their health care plans into account.