More than 13 million adults ages 19 to 29 lacked insurance coverage in 2007 because many young adults hold low-wage or temporary jobs that don’t include benefits.
This is according to a supplement put out by the Columbia Journalism Review for journalists to understand issues surrounding healthcare reform (which is helpful because it can be very confusing!) It is based on a report put out by The Commonwealth Fund. It goes on to say :
During their early working years, young people frequently go without coverage until they get jobs with better benefits. Yet Commonwealth research shows that gaps in coverage can have important health and economic consequences for young adults and their families.
Comprehensive health reform could extend affordable coverage not only to the 13 million young adults who currently are uninsured but also to the millions more who undergo coverage transitions during their early working years. Young adults could also remain covered under their parents’ policies until age 26. Those with incomes up to 150 percent of poverty level could receive coverage under Medicaid or CHIP. A portable public health insurance plan within a national health insurance exchange would provide a continuous source of coverage for young people who make frequent job changes.”
I believe part of the solution also lies in young people making conscious decisions to lead a healthier lifestyle. Preventative medicine really is key I am often appalled by the total lack of nutritional knowledge some of my peers have. They think eating healthy means eating “100-calorie packs” of cookies. They smoke socially. They listen to their iPods at high volume levels. Some of us can be very inactive. I, for one, will often sit on Facebook or in front of the TV for hours instead of going outside for a jog.
Young people who are still building their careers still deserve health insurance, but they should also do their part to take care of themselves.