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Thursday, September 19, 2013

Young Adults Support the Affordable Care Act and Are Likely to Sign Up for Coverage

Shannon Donahue

Staff Writer

There seems to be a catch-22 when it comes to enrolling young, healthy people in the new health insurance marketplaces (sometimes called exchanges): They are critical to the success of the marketplaces, but experts predict that recruiting young adults to sign up for coverage will be challenging. But a recent poll suggests it may not be so challenging after all.

The White House, the Department of Health and Human Services, and Affordable Care Act advocates across the country hope to enroll 7 million Americans in the new marketplaces (open for enrollment starting on October 1), including 2.5 million young, healthy adults.

The good news is that it may not be too hard to convince young adults to enroll. According to a recent poll conducted by the Morning Consult, young people are most supportive of the Affordable Care Act across all age groups, and they are more likely to consider enrolling in the new marketplaces than any other age group.

At Families USA, we can’t say we’re surprised, especially considering all the Affordable Care Act has to offer young Americans:

A New, Easier Way to Find Health Coverage

Starting on October 1, there will be a new place to compare costs and benefits of a variety of health plans. Young adults will be able to use the marketplace as a one-stop-shop to find coverage that meets their needs.

Financial Assistance for Health Coverage

Premium tax credits will provide assistance to people who earn up to 400 percent of poverty (up to $45,960 for an individual). Young adults are the likeliest group to be eligible for these tax credits, as more than one-third (36 percent) of eligible individuals are ages 18-34.

Free Preventive Services

The Affordable Care Act requires new plans to make preventive services such as flu shots, birth control, health screenings, and check-ups available without having to pay a copayment or deductible.

Protection from High, Unexpected Costs

No one plans to get sick or hurt, but at some point, most people need medical care. Enrolling in health coverage protects you from unexpected medical costs. The Affordable Care Act requires health plans to have an out-of-pocket spending maximum, and yearly or lifetime dollar limits on coverage are prohibited.

Young adults support the Affordable Care Act and are interested in enrolling in coverage through the health insurance marketplaces. Let’s spread the word! Open enrollment begins on October 1. Go to healthcare.gov or call 1-800-318-2596 to learn more.

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