Brace for Impact

January 7, 2010

With the both of the House and Senate health care reform approaching President Obama’s desk, it is time for young adults to prepare for premiums. Once the reform is put into motion, the federal government is going to require that everybody obtain health insurance coverage. This will have little effect for those who are currently receiving insurance through their employers. On the other hand, this is going to have a big impact on the lives of the young adults who currently have no coverage.

Anne Kim, of the non-profit think tank Third Way, reported to FOX 10 that “”The Census Bureau tells us there are 18 million people between the ages of 18 and 35 who are uninsured — roughly half of the uninsured population are younger people in that age group.”

Under the new health insurance package, individuals who decide to refuse coverage will be fined. In the Senate bill, the fines start as low as $95 a year in 2014. Eventually rising to anywhere between $750 and $2,250 based on the income of the person being fined. The House bill calculates the fine amount as 2.5 percent of the income of the person being penalized.

The government is requiring that healthy young adults receive health coverage to help keep the costs of premiums down for everyone else. The policies for this age group require less expenses due to good health, in turn the premiums can be used to help compensate for health expenses of individuals who are more prone to illness.

The Senate has included a bare-bones insurance plan that would provide coverage for young adults at a more affordable rate. FOX points out that “this is perhaps the keystone of the entire reform effort, because if young people dont get into the insurance pool, everything else — especially cost containment — could fall apart.”

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