The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was intended to reduce health insurance costs for millions of Americans, but it seems that the youngest age group may have been left behind in this regard. As such, many of those younger people may now be dissatisfied with the impact the law has on them.
Under the ACA, the cost of health insurance is intended to be distributed more evenly so that older Americans - who generally require more care and therefore face significantly elevated costs per year - wouldn't be quite so financially burdened, according to a report from the Guardian. However, that means that younger people - who tend to seek medical care infrequently or even not at all – will be paying higher premiums which reflect the redistribution of healthcare costs across all age groups. As such, and because many millennials are working on relatively small salaries, many are simply taking the option to go without coverage and pay a small fine this year.
Why is this an issue?
Today, the latest data shows that more than 18 percent of college graduates across the country are considered under-employed, and many may not be able to obtain health coverage through their employers, the report said. Consequently, those who are eligible for the ACA's federal or state-run exchanges may find that the cost of buying even subsidized coverage may be too great for them to bear overall. Many may even want to buy coverage but simply cannot squeeze it into their monthly or annual budgets.
Irina Ivanova, a 28-year-old who chronicled her experience with trying to enroll in Obamacare for Crain's New York, told the newspaper that she is not opposed to the health care law itself, but does feel a little hard done by, saying the requirement for young people "feels like extortion." Specifically, she objects to the fine charged to those who can't afford coverage, and yet wants to be covered in the event that something bad happens.
As such, many health insurance issuers may want to consider the ways in which they might be able to meet the needs of these younger Americans without dinging them with huge bills for coverage, and still keeping their deductibles as low as possible. Those that are able to do so might be able to find a little more success in reaching this generation in particular, which could be a boon to both those Americans and the companies' bottom lines.