Surprise! ObamaCare Needs More of the Young and Healthy

Sometimes the news just makes me laugh.

Apparently, the young and healthy are not clamoring for ObamaCare. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reported today that only one quarter of 18 to 34 year olds who need to sign up for ObamaCare are actually doing it. (To see the news release, click here.)

This 25 percent only meets 18 percent necessary to make ObamaCare work. Meanwhile, one-third of the 2.2 million who signed up are 55 to 64 years old.

In other words and to no surprise, high risk people who will cost more to cover are signing up faster than the “low risk” younger crowd. The younger generation is also smaller than this age group, which represents part of the heavily populated baby boomer generation.

From the insurance perspective, this is just another “I told you” moment. Convincing the young and healthy to buy health care coverage has always been tough. Meanwhile, the “adverse risk” group continues to grow as the American waistline expands.

­_______________
When I look back to my own experience, I know there was no way
I could have afforded the Affordable Care Act when I was 22…
_______________

Insurance experts pointed to past experience and actuarial charts to show the costs of coverage. They knew it would cost Americans more – both collectively and individually – in taxes and fees. So it is no surprise that 79 percent of the nearly 2.2 million who managed to get signed up requested financial assistance, according to the HHS news release.

I think about today’s young adults. Many are burdened with student loans that mirror the cost of a car payment. They are having a hard time finding work, even if they earn advanced degrees. They face the highest taxes in U.S. history and, without a mortgage, lack much relief from tax deductions.

When I look back to my own experience, I know there was no way I could have afforded the Affordable Care Act when I was 22 and fresh out of college. I came from a lower middle working class background. My dad loaded trucks for a living. Mom was a sales clerk at Sears. To get through college, I worked and borrowed. I was the first in my family to earn a college degree.

My first job was with the state of Ohio’s Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, which Thank God, provided very affordable health care. It was hard enough for me to pay the pre-25 year-old premium for car insurance or pay taxes without deductions. I was driving a beater (well, actually a cool one –a ’77 Cutlass 442 with a 350-V8 engine, but I am digressing…oh, I still miss that car!)– paying for a modest one-bedroom apartment in German Village alone with my 8 percent interest student loans and the costs of just getting started in life. I didn’t live with my parents and they really did not have money to help. In my day, successful people did not sponge off their parents or the government.

But now I laugh until I cry, realizing that the Obama behind the care never really faced the financial struggles that most of us do. And he will probably never have to get ObamaCare either.

13 thoughts on “Surprise! ObamaCare Needs More of the Young and Healthy

  1. Dan Miller says:

    In addition, not only are the young and healthy not signing up the majority of people who are signing up have pre-existing conditions and/or no health insurance, which only makes sense .They should sign up and would be nuts not to.

    As a result of this unbalance in the current enrollment in the ACA, according to very reliable sources a “bail-out” of the health insurance industry may result. A previously little publicized clause in the 2,000 plus pages of rules and regulations would trigger such a bailout. The argument from the insurance industry will be that they were not at fault in the botched roll-out of the ACA and. therefore, entitled to a Federal bailout.

    Any chance the current administration is going to delay the bailout till after the Mid-Term elections?

    • annmariecommunicatesinsurance says:

      You mean the 2,000 plus regulations from the 1,000+ page bill nobody read and signed?

      Wow! I did not know that the private health insurance industry might have to do a bailout. With what? They lost a lot of customers last fall due to ObamaCare. Of course, he is sorry that so many people lost coverage. I really feel bad for those people.

      If the end goal is to get everyone on single payer coverage, then the failing of ObamaCare would be a reason to justify expanding Medicare to everyone. Either way, there just are not enough young people around to support the aging population. We have known for years this would be an issue and now it has come to roost.

  2. dmillerymd says:

    A Duke University survey just released of top companies found that 44% are considering reducing health benefits to current employees due to Obamacare. Duke also found that nearly half are “reluctant” to hire full time employees because of the law.

    In addition, 40% are considering shifting to part-time workers and others will hire fewer workers or fire some to avoid the added costs of the program.

    This is on top of the CBO report this week stating that the ACA created a “disincentive” to work for low-wage employees.

    More unintended consequences……

  3. annmariecommunicatesinsurance says:

    It gets better. The Congressional Budget Office just released a report that suggests almost 2.5 million workers might lose their jobs (or have their hours cut to part-time) in the next few years thanks to the implementation of Obamacare. http://finance.townhall.com/columnists/michaelschaus/2014/02/05/harry-reid-says-unemployment-is-a-good-thing–its-free-agency-n1789843

    U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, ObamaCare is great for workers because they don’t have to be stuck in jobs they do not like. That’s great news for employers who spend thousands of dollars recruiting and training new employees.

    I am tempted to write a blog about why I do not intend to become an employer. It’s just too much hassle!

    • dmillerymd says:

      The White House now considering a 3 year extension to cancelled health plans in the individual market .The election promise that “you can keep your health plan if you like” was considered by many to be a bold face lie since the law was passed in 2010 requiring all health plans to meet all the “essential requirements.” What was left out of that pledge is that you can keep your plan if you like it if it meets all the requirements and added costs of the ACA and your doctor agrees to re-enlist in your plan.

      The administration may now push back this controversial provision to not only after the mid-term election but after the next PRESIDENTIAL election.

      Are they trying to hide the sticker shock to Americans for political purposes.? Are they now trying to protect the next “anointed one” . Can it be the “signature piece of legislation” may not be all that well thought out? Are they now admitting that two terms in the White House
      is not enough time? Or is this just another “fake scandal” made up by Fox News according to the President?

  4. annmariecommunicatesinsurance says:

    I am uncomfortable with saying the president lied. We just don’t know what he knew and when.

    At the least, the magnitude of ObamaCare was underestimated — or ignored — in the name of political expediency.

    What always amazes me is why the Feds did not just start with basic coverage instead of going for a Cadillac plan that covers everything under the sun except was is not approved by health panels.

    I think the American public would have been OK with basic coverage for everyone. It’s adding on the other stuff that makes this plan completely unaffordable for everyone.

    • dmillerymd says:

      The Washington Post called it a lie. Did the President know it was a lie or was he just misinformed about what he calls his signature legislation by his own political team is a good question. Either way deeply troubling.

      New job numbers for January was pitiful and the Duke University study shows a direct link between the ACA and employers not hiring and/or cutting back on hours.

      Thanks Nancy Pelosi for telling the Democrats in Congress that “they need to vote for the bill to see what was in it.”

  5. annmariecommunicatesinsurance says:

    The part that gets me that they are getting away with this. Could you imagine how the founders of this country would have reacted to the expectations and entitlements we have today?

    The political lies I have seen in the past 20 years make Nixon look like a saint.

    • dmillerymd says:

      One of the stated goals was to force employers with 50 or more employees to provide health benefits to their employees or face fines which fired up the President’s political base. What they NEVER mentioned is that prior to the ACA 96% of all employers with 50 or more employees already provided health benefits to their employees!

      That number will now most likely plummet.

      I was optimistic in 2010 that the ACA would address the real issue of the uninsured, eliminate denials based on-pre-existing conditions etc. We do need health care reform. But why destroy what was working for the majority of people.?

      The focus should have been on the uninsured, not the 80% who were happy with their health coverage. The best health plan is when you have a JOB and your employer provides a health plan!!! Those new jobs are now scarcer than a Red Sox fan in the Bronx.

      AOL announced yesterday that the ACA will cost the company an additional $7.1 Million dollars this year. So now they most likely have to reduce matching funds to 401K plans.

      More unintended consequences….

    • dmillerymd says:

      I just wanted to bring closure on this discussion of what the President said and what he knew. Throughout his campaign the President repeatedly said; “If you like your doctor and your health plan you can keep it”. His supporters would cheer wildly and the quote was repeated on TV commercials for his campaign and carried by the national media to support his “signature” legislation

      On November 11, 2013 at a WH press conference the President said the following regarding his pledge; “No doubt that the way I put that forward unequivocally ended up not being accurate.”

      I agree 100% with the President that his comments were “not accurate”.

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