Obamacare Success Based on Young And Healthy Needing Insurance

posted on

According to estimates in the country, nearly one third of the nation’s uninsured are young and healthy Americans. The success or failure of Obama’s healthcare law is going to depend on their participation in Obamacare. “There’s pretty broad agreement that new health care exchanges can’t work if we don’t get broad participation in the system,” says Robert Zirklbach, a spokesperson for America’s Health Insurance Plans. Enrollment for these upcoming exchanges begins on October 1st.

“If the younger people simply decide not to purchase health insurance until they need it, that’s going to actually increase costs for everyone, both those who are young as well as those who are old,” Zirkelbach adds. “Getting young people in the system is good for everybody, and it’s good for the long-term sustainability of the new health insurance exchanges.” Based on the new law, those who choose not to purchase any healthcare insurance must pay a $95 opt out fee or 1 percent of their respective income, whichever amount may be larger. What is unclear is whether or not this is going to be enough of a penalty to encourage participation.

For many young people, the issue is that buying insurance is going to cost them money. Often times, it’s going to cost around $200 to $300 per month. For some people, they don’t make enough of a salary to be able to justify having to pay that type of money on a monthly basis. They only make enough money to be able to cover the rent, their food expenses, and some of their bills. This is one of the main reasons that a lot of young people don’t have health insurance - they simply can’t afford it.

A government marketing analysis by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, better known as CMS, turned the uninsured into six identifiable groups that they believe are critical in making the implementation of the new law a success. The “young and healthy” have the lowest tendency to enroll and take their health for granted; they’re believed not to buy any insurance until they absolutely need it. The “sick, active, and worried” are those who are cost conscious and are likely to look for information about healthcare but don’t always understand the system. The “passive and unengaged” are those who are likely not to understand the healthcare system and fear that they will make the wrong decisions. The “informed, healthy, and educated” are those who feel that insurance and healthcare are important and they keep themselves updated on new changes. The “mature and secure” are those who are older in age and feel that healthcare information is important, but use it for preventative measures, while the “vulnerable and unengaged” are those who are not in ideal health but also feel that health care information is not important.