Many will agree that in today’s world, millennials have a much tougher time with the day-to-day cost of living in such areas as housing, education, and healthcare than their parents and those generations before them. Many are also not well versed in understanding healthcare, including the costs, benefits, and needs for coverage.
According to a survey conducted in 2018, an estimated 36% of millennials put to the test were able to accurately define the four basic terms of insurance—deductible, co-insurance, co-payments, and out-of-pocket maximum. In the interest of being fair, overall, only an estimated 4% of Americans could also define the terms.
The first suggestion is that consumers study and learn the standard terms used about health insurance. However, remember that the issue for millennials includes more than just the basic understanding of those terms. In reality, the concept of health insurance is new to many millennials.
Before providing a better understanding of how health insurance works, it would be better served that millennials understand the importance of health insurance, to begin with. Many young and currently healthy individuals do not think that having health insurance is needed for a while off. However, statistics have shown that millennials as a whole accumulate more medical debt than those considered to be baby boomers.
The National Financial Capability conducted a study that showed that 25% of individuals between the ages of 18 and 50 had accumulated past-due medical bills. Taking this information into consideration, the study may reflect that many millennials do not have health insurance coverage, or they may not have the funds to cover their part of the coverage on medical bills. The fact shows that millennials acquire medical bills and, at somepoint, will need to consider health insurance.
Young adults must realize that health insurance is just as important as it is for their elderly counterparts. The primary purpose of having health insurance is to protect the individual from financial ruin if a medical emergency arises—which happens more often than most realize. Duke Professor Anirudh Krishna states that the most common trigger for causing a downward spiral into poverty is illness or an injury for those not covered under health insurance.
The next question may be—is health insurance for millennials much different from other health insurance? Well, yes and no. Because millennials are still young, they will not need all the bells and whistles of benefits that their elderly counterparts may need. Although, when first introduced, those plans that qualified under the Obamacare initiative included many benefits, millennials did not necessarily need them.
Then, in 2019 the mandate no longer applied to individual plans, and those who wanted to purchase a more affordable, less benefit-heavy plan were not facing any of the original fines. At this time, although there are no health plans termed as being millennial-focused, there are a variety of plans out there geared towards young individuals. These plans allow the insured to purchase temporary coverage or insurance without many bells and whistles.
The closest type of insurance that could be considered explicitly designed for younger individuals is what is referred to as a catastrophic plan. This type of plan is primarily available for:
- Those individuals under 30 years of age
- Those that qualify for an affordability orhardship exemption
If you are a millennial and think that adding a new monthly bill to cover health insurance is a bit much, do your research. There is a wealth of information on the internet about the various plans available and the benefits they afford. Some plans help you to lower your monthly cost through the use of subsidies as well.
You are never too young to consider acquiring health insurance. What it all comes down to is, health insurance will go a long way to preventing your financial ruin in the event of an unexpected and unplanned expensive illness or injury.
Here at Savvi, our mission is to help people take the stress out of buying health insurance in Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, Ann Arbor, and Grand Rapids. Feel confident by knowing that you'll have the absolute best plan that fits your lifestyle & budget. We look forward to working with you.