1M more insured due to healthcare reform

Sept. 22, 2011 at 5:29 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, Sept. 22 (UPI) -- Healthcare reform, which allows children to stay on their parents' insurance until age 26, means 1 million more young adults are covered, U.S. officials say.

Data from the National Health Interview Survey showed in the first quarter of this year, the percentage of adults ages 19-25 with health insurance increased by 3.5 percentage points, or some 1 million additional young adults with health insurance, compared to a year ago.

"As a mom, I know how scary it is to think about what could happen to your kids if they go without healthcare coverage, which is what makes today's news so important," Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, said in a statement. "Thanks to the Affordable Care Act hundreds of thousands more young people have the healthcare coverage they need."

Gallup Poll showed a significant increase in rates of insured adults ages 18-25, from 71 percent in the first quarter of 2010 to 75.1 percent in the second quarter of 2011, Sebelius said.

In 2008, the uninsured rate for this age group -- and all age groups -- began to increase as the economy was collapsing and unemployment rising, Gallup officials said.

However, the percentage of uninsured ages 26 to 64 continues to increase, rising to a high of 19.9 percent in the second quarter of this year and among all Americans, 17.4 percent reported being uninsured in the second quarter of the year, Gallup officials said.

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