Barriers for Young Adults
If insurance is so important, why do 1 in 3 young adults - over 15 million individuals - lack insurance in the United States? Here's why:
Health insurance is expensive. A typical policy can cost over $200 per month for a healthy, young adult. For young adults earning entry-level salaries, or trying to pay off college debt, this a significant cost, and so many choose not to be insured.
2. Lack of Employer-Sponsored Insurance:
Employers offer health insurance to employees because they receive a tax credit to do so. Providing benefits helps them attract and retain talented employees. However, young adults, many of whom work for small businesses often do not receive insurance from their employers. So, young adults continue to stay uninsured, instead of buying expensive individual insurance from the private market.
3. End of “Dependent” Status
Insurance companies used to only allow children under the age of 18 or until college graduation to stay on their parents insurance. Once they turned 18 or graduated, they were kicked off their parent’s policies, and once again, left to buy expensive individual insurance in the private market. Now, because of the Affordable Care Act, young adults can stay on their parents health insurance until age 26.
4. “Young Invincibles”
Often times, policymakers call young adults the “Young Invincibles.” This means that policymakers think that we are too healthy to want to get insured. Many times, we think this as well, and believe that we can forgo health insurance because we are young and healthy.