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Conservative pundits, think tanks and bloggers are cheering a new analysis which claims to show "Why the 'Young Invincibles' Won't Participate in the ObamaCare Exchanges." Even with the Affordable Care Act's subsidies to help uninsured Americans purchase coverage, David Hogberg of the National Center for Public Policy Research argues, three million young adults ages 18 to 34 will be $1,000 better off if they forgo insurance and pay the penalty. With the Obama administration needing 2.7 million of them to enroll in order to offset the cost of insuring older, sicker adults, Hogberg concludes, the Affordable Care Act is headed for a "death spiral."

For conservatives committed to sabotaging Obamacare, that prospect is generating a near-orgasmic response. Unfortunately for them, Hogberg is telling only half of the story. While he lays out the costs for young adults obtaining health insurance in 2014, he predictably leaves out the benefits if they actually get sick. As it turns out, the numbers show that millions of Young Invincibles have already gained insurance thanks to the ACA. Just as important, surveys show how worried they are about going without.

As you may recall, since September 2010 the Affordable Care Act has enabled young adults to join or remain on their parents' insurance policies up to age 26. By May 2011, 1.2 million did just that. By the end of the year, a Commonwealth Fund analysis estimated that:

In 2011, 13.7 million young adults ages 19 to 25 stayed on or joined their parents' health plans, including 6.6 million who would likely not have been able to do so before passage of the Affordable Care Act.
More on this below the fold.

Despite that progress, the Department of Health and Human Services says 19 million people between the ages of 18 and 34 remain uninsured. Up to 9 million may qualify for coverage under the ACA's expanded Medicaid program. And while subsidies for those earning up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level ($14,484 for a single person in 2011) for the others may not cover all of the costs of obtaining coverage, the math for young adults is more complex than that. As the Commonwealth Fund reported in June 2012:

Nearly two of five (39%) young adults ages 19 to 29 went without health insurance at some time in 2011, and more than one-third (36%) had medical bill problems or were paying off medical debt. Of those who reported problems with medical bills or debt, many faced serious financial consequences such as using all of their savings (43%), being unable to make student loan or tuition payments (32%), delaying education or career plans (31%), or being unable to pay for necessities such as food, heat, or rent (28%)...

The amount of medical debt was often substantial. One-quarter of young adults who were paying off medical debt owed $4,000 or more, and 15 percent reported $8,000 or more in debt. Among those with a gap in coverage during the year who were paying off debt, 31 percent had $4,000 or more of medical debt, 21 percent had $8,000 or more, and 11 percent had $10,000 or more.

Writing in the New Republic, Jonathan Cohn offered six reasons why the Young Invincibles will probably sign up for insurance at or above the numbers HHS is targeting.

It is not just that only a quarter of them said in a recent poll they won't obtain insurance and pay the penalty (a penalty which increases over time). As it turns out, young adults clearly see the value of health insurance when they can get it and when they can't:

The other poll, published in June, is from the Kaiser Family Foundation. Eighty-seven percent of young people surveyed said they considered it "personally important" to get insurance, 88 percent said "insurance is something I need," and 66 percent said they worried about paying medical bills in case of injury or illness. [...]

Still, the best indicator of how young people feel about insurance may be the way they respond when they have full-time jobs and their employers offer coverage. According to Aaron Smith, president of the group Young Invincibles, around seven in ten young people opt for insurance, even though it means sacrificing some take-home pay. That's nearly the same take-up rate as older Americans have.

It's not just the polling that suggests those critical young adults will purchase insurance in the numbers Uncle Sam needs. Right now, there is a real world experiment going on in with the individual mandate in Massachusetts. While the state overall has seen in its uninsured rate drop from 10 to about two percent, the gains among the Young Invincibles have been striking. As the Commonwealth Fund reported:
In 2006, Massachusetts passed a reform law very similar to the Affordable Care Act, with subsidized health insurance options as well as an individual requirement to have health insurance. Sharon Long and colleagues found that in Massachusetts there has been substantial compliance with the mandate among young adults. The uninsured rate among young adults ages 19 to 26 in the state declined by more than 60 percent in the year following the rollout of the law, falling from 21.1 percent in 2005-2006 to 8.2 percent in 2007-2008. In New York, which had no mandate or coverage expansion over those years, the uninsured rate among young adults remained at 27 percent.
All of this evidence suggests that the likes of the Washington Examiner, the Washington Free Beacon, The Daily Caller, the American Enterprise Institute and the Heritage Foundation shouldn't count their Obamacare chickens before hatch. If the Obama administration is successful in its outreach, the typical Young Invincible will likely conclude the benefits of the President's program will outweigh its costs. Besides, our representative Young Invincible has already heard the Republicans' plan for him should he become seriously sick or injured. A September 2011 Republican presidential debate revealed the GOP's approach: "Let him die."

Originally posted to Jon Perr on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 01:04 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  It really ain't hard (5+ / 0-)

    most young and healthy people don't need health insurance, but some smaller number really, really need it...and nobody knows which one they are gonna be--so insurance.

    "Empty vessels make the loudest sound, they have the least wit and are the greatest blabbers" Plato

    by Empty Vessel on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 01:21:25 PM PDT

    •  That's why comprehensive insurance (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VClib, nextstep, Sparhawk

      does not make financial sense for young people.  Because they visit doctors so infrequently, it is financially better for them to have a very high deductible catastrophic policy, with low premiums. For most, what they save in the premium difference is enough to cover any out of pocket expense that they would not have under a comprehensive policy. That's ESPECIALLY true if they can spend what money they do spend from a health savings account.

      I'm an employer -- we offer a number of options, and an HSA, and our employees can do the math.

      Unfortunately for young people, the ACA is not going to give the the option of only a catastrophic policy.  For most of them, that's what they need -- NOT a comprehensive policy that, for a very high cost, covers most out of pocket expenses. Absent a catastrophic event, the vast majority of young people don't have a huge amount of out of pocket expenses.  

      •  ACA offers different levels (6+ / 0-)

        The lowest level is basically a catastrophic plan but it offers yearly checkup and wellness visits, immunizations, etc, that young people who now have a catastrophic insurance plan either aren't getting or are paying for out of pocket.  They should check with their state's exchange to compare costs and benefits.  If the exchange does't offer anything better or cheaper, no big deal, they already have insurance and are not the uninsured "invincible" youth that this diary is talking about.

        Kudos to you as an employer caring for what your employees need in this arena.


        We are all in this together.

        by htowngenie on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 02:15:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The bronze plan is close to catostrophic coverage (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Kentucky DeanDemocrat, Tonedevil

        The cheapest plans have deductibles of $2000 and it only covers 60% of the costs after that until you reach your out of pocket max at around $6500.

        With subsidies, the plans can costs nothing depending on their income level.

        There is some more comprehensive coverage added onto it, but young people use some of the benefits like free birth control, preventative care and prescription drug coverage.

        •  One Example: Oregon Silver Plan (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Premiums will vary from state to state.  States running their own exchanges generally will offer better coverage and premiums.

          But just looking at Oregon (where I am) gives you a feel for Hogberg's example of a single, 22-year old woman who earns $18,100 a year. Using Cover Oregon's calculator for a silver plan, she would have a total premium of $281 a month, of which she would pay only $66 a month. The rest (77 percent) is covered by subsidies.

          One emergency room visit, one expensive prescription or even one pricey test could make her insurance pay for itself.  That is, her investment could pay off just for routine care.

      •  Actually (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Alice in Florida

        Companies can offer catastrophic coverage plans in the exchange for people under 30 (and certain people over 30). Colorado just posted their rates a few days ago ( and for a 27-year-old nonsmoker, catastrophic coverage starts at $135/month before the subsidy.

        And I agree...I was on COBRA for 18 months and it absolutely killed me financially. I eventually switched to another plan with a $5k deductible for a quarter of the price. (Granted, mine was through the state - had it been through a private insurer the cost would have been higher - but still).

      •  preexisting condition (0+ / 0-)

        Young people, at some point in their life, are going to be without a job for a certain period, as I was a couple time during 18-39 some for significant stretches At the time what would have problematic for me was something happening, say a diabetes diagnosis during that time, and then my new insurance would say I had a preexisting condition.  Cobra would have been around $300 a month, for someone unemployed.

        All these plans ignore real costs as one moves from 30 to 40.  The ability of insurance to not cover preexisting conditions.  The expense of current insurance plans.  Yes, maybe someone who is 30 might have only catastrophic insurance, but my insurance at that age was not that much, and it would be nice to know that I could go a few months without risk of future coverage.  

      •  Round here (4+ / 0-)

        young people get pregnant.

        It's all that abstinence education.

        Be good if they had health insuance.

        If you want something other than the obvious to happen; you've got to do something other than the obvious. Douglas Adams

        by trillian on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 09:24:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Even one trip to the ER or doctor... (0+ / 0-)

        ...will rack up a hefty bill.  Really, if you are going to present options to your employees, please also present the actual cost of an ER visit, a check up, a visit for something simple like a strep throat and cough, or a day surgery, any of which might be a surprise event and expense for a younger person. Also show the true added up cost of co pays and deductibles and the 20% most people pay.  Also figure in the difference if EVERYBODY paid into good insurance versus when only the sick people pay into insurance.  

        Last year I had three same day surgeries.  Because of deductibles, the 20%, and co pays, I had a sort of Buy One, Get Two Free situation, paying a couple thousand total, but any additional visits to any doctors is $50 upfront, copay.  The three surgeries were about $15,000, $18,000, and $22,000.  Believe me, this isn't something that a person can foresee.  

        Now I have to pay full freight for my insurance, since I had to switch to COBRA insurance.  Believe me, it is worth every penny.  

      •  Hogwash (0+ / 0-)

        I was one of those young people who had this kind of policy when I worked in theater years ago, mainly because it was all I could afford to get since my employers (with one exception, where they both chipped in generously and offered good, regular plans that we could afford) generally didn't pay part of the premiums. It was virtually useless. I spent almost as much out of pocket as I would have otherwise (i.e., if I'd been uninsured and not counting what I spent on the premiums) even though I wasn't using it very much. It didn't make real healthcare any more available to me, and I would still have seen giant medical debts from all the deductibles if I'd ever actually had that catastrophic illness or injury. These policies may work for young people who have a well-paid job and can afford to put fairly large sums into an HSA, but for most young people this is not an economic reality. And my experience with this was back in the 1980s, when healthcare costs were relatively lower and decent jobs for young people were much easier to obtain.

        I understand that as an employer you might like to have more employees choose this option, since it certainly costs less for you as well, but it's a very poor choice for them under any circumstances, even when they are as lucky as I was never to need to rely on it.

        Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory, tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat. Sun Tzu The Art of War

        by Stwriley on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 08:30:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  No. (9+ / 0-)
      most young and healthy people don't need health insurance
      Are you serious?

      Us "young people" know we need it, we just can't fucking afford it.

      Banking on the American people to be able to sort all this out and declare the adult in the room the winner is a very big bet. -Digby

      by Boogalord on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:28:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Just like you don't need car insurance until... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Stwriley, Shrew in Shrewsbury OOPS happens.  Like my daughter who neglected to pay for her car insurance and had an accident that cost her $5000 for repairs.  She decided that she would still have a better car paying for the repairs than what ever kind of car she could get for $5000.  

        Insurance is something you can't afford to be without, unless you are willing to face bankruptcy, or accept a handout from the state, or charity care.  And, yeah, the very independent minded and the right wing against Obama care people probably wouldn't hesitate to have someone else pay their bills if it came to that.  

  •  This study is like saying (3+ / 0-)

    you would save $1000 a year if you never bought car insurance.

    You can also save money if you don't buy homeowners insurance either.

    Why do people even bother with insurance?

    •  Exactly....all these people here saying young (0+ / 0-)

      people don't need insurance....sure, UNLESS they get sick, or get in an accident. And that NEVER happens....except it sure enough does.

      But I guess if they repeat it enough times it suddenly becomes true....NOT.

      "I wonder why Congress again in a new poll out today--11% approval rating. (It's) because they don't work for us. They work for the sons-of-bitches who pay them." Cenk Uygur

      by Dave in Columbus on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 05:14:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Of course, you can only not buy homeowner's (0+ / 0-)

      insurance if you own your home free and clear, i.e., no mortgage. If you have a mortgage, the bank is going to insist you have insurance to protect their investment.

      "All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out." --I.F. Stone

      by Alice in Florida on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 09:38:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  A simple solution: (0+ / 0-)

    Universal, Single-Payer Healthcare.

    Please arrive soon!

    -4.75, -5.33 Cheney 10/05/04: "I have not suggested there is a connection between Iraq and 9/11."

    by sunbro on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 04:05:19 PM PDT

  •  Doctors won't see you without insurance (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Illinois IRV, wmspringer

    Duh. That's why they'll get insurance. Young women need birth control. Derp.

    And once they get their OWN insurance at a cheap rate they will start businesses in their garages again, just like they're supposed to be doing. (Think about the years that Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Michael Dell got their starts...) And they will finally put our economy back on track, just like their predecessors did.

    Obamacare will be far from perfect but it will have a ton of positive effects on our country...which is precisely why these stooges have crossed over the desperate threshold into "Hail Mary" territory.

  •  HELL (3+ / 0-)

    Way back when in 1971 - 1978 I had health insurance through my employer. I had a major shoulder operation, broke my leg on a ski hill and had my tonsils pulled. This stuff can happen to any person, and any young person thinking they are immune to health problems is  just a dumb arse.

    The Ghost of Tom Joad

    by Illinois IRV on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 05:10:10 PM PDT

    •  For me it was appendicitis. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Johnny Nucleo

      Nothing to do with how old I was.

      "I wonder why Congress again in a new poll out today--11% approval rating. (It's) because they don't work for us. They work for the sons-of-bitches who pay them." Cenk Uygur

      by Dave in Columbus on Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 05:16:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Or a tick (7+ / 0-)

      My 30 year old healthy spouse went on a labor day picnic and was bitten by a tick.  She developed Rocky Mountain spotted fever.  She was in intensive care for two weeks, given a 50 percent chance of survival at one point, and had a total of three months hospital and home care.  The total cost was around $250,000, and this was almost 30 years ago; I'm betting it would be a million today.   Thankfully we had good insurance and she recovered fully.  

      There is no such thing as invincible outside of comic books.    

    •  Excellent point (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      young people may not get major illnesses, but young people also tend to be more active.

      There is also the misconception that at age 34 you can still do many of the same things that you could do during your mid-20's without fear.

      Many of my cohorts are runners, and virtually everyone that I know is a golfer. All it takes is one wrong step... Hell, my wife broke her ankle while walking our dog.

  •  Because they figure (12+ / 0-)

    that the "young invincibles" (a name that reveals their lack of respect for the intelligence of young adults) are just as much mercenary little bastards as they are.

    The GOP can't win on ideas. They can only win by lying, cheating, and stealing. So they do.

    by psnyder on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:25:44 PM PDT

  •  If RW messaging had any real resonance (5+ / 0-)

    with this demographic, anyway, I'd be worried :)

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:26:40 PM PDT

  •  Invincible but not stupid. That's me 40 years ago. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, housesella, White Buffalo

    Ah, youth....

    "So, am I right or what?"

    by itzik shpitzik on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:28:18 PM PDT

  •  I swear to God. (9+ / 0-)

    If I see the phrase "young invincibles" one more time I'm gonna fucking quack.

    That's a right-winger term. We need to stop using it, right now. Young people know we need insurance. We're not stupid. It's just extremely expensive for us, the self-absorbed"entitled generation" living it up on shit wages, no benefits, crippling school debt, and unreachable health care. "Invincible" my ass.

    Instead of saying "young invincibles", just say "young people". Easy!

    Banking on the American people to be able to sort all this out and declare the adult in the room the winner is a very big bet. -Digby

    by Boogalord on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:35:36 PM PDT

  •  Republican logic (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    housesella, JerryNA, True North

    It's cheaper to pay to get nothing than it is to pay and get  something.

    Gee, that works out.

    (By the way--it's not only birth control that young women generally seek.  There's this dirty little secret--only young women can get pregnant.  And have children.)

    Just because the government keeps a record of real property transfers, it doesn't mean that the government wants to confiscate your home.

    by NCJan on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:50:28 PM PDT

    •  Yep, pregnancy and a baby (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Shrew in Shrewsbury, NCJan

      In 2011 my daughter had a baby.  Thank goodness she was under us due to Obama care.  Her bills came to about $10,000.  The baby's bills were also about $10,000, but there was no coverage for that, not even Medicaid, because, get this:  she had worked "TOO LONG" ie, too close to the date of the birth, so she didn't qualify.  Presumably, the hospital tapped into charity care or wrote off those bills, or the tax payers paid for it.

      See, if you don't have insurance, somebody else is paying your way.  The state saved themselves $10,000 because we HAD PAID to have our daughter on our insurance.  It wasn't free.  Somebody else paid for the baby's care.  

      For the previous two years, our daughter had worked 2 jobs just to support herself on the sh__ wages that beginning part time jobs with no benefits paid during the recession.  She is a suma cum laud college graduate, and had been working since about age 15.  

      •  Yep (0+ / 0-)

        That health insurance conundrum for adults in their 20s is one I know well.

        Decades ago, when I was in my early 20s, I had an asthma attack--not chronic, mind you, but because of an allergic reaction, easily avoided in the future.

        Later, when I tried to get insurance, BC/BS told me that they would only insure me on condition that they would never pay for anything to do with my lungs--because, you see, asthma is a pre-existing condition for lung cancer, punctured lung, all kinds of things.

        Because I didn't want that "pre-existing condition" following me around, I remained uninsured until many years later when I finally got a full time job. Going in under group coverage, you see, they didn't look for or ask about pre-existing conditions.

        Who knows what I would have done if I'd had a baby during that time I was forced to remain uninsured. Or an accident, or any of the many other issues that can befall people at any age.

        Just because the government keeps a record of real property transfers, it doesn't mean that the government wants to confiscate your home.

        by NCJan on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 10:09:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  You would think that old republicans (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    would be encouraging young folk participation. But old republicans are either wealthy or have sweet government backed health insurance so what do they give a shit? They just want to be a big downer on the middle class as usual.

    I support the two-state solution: for the USA.

    by plok on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:59:45 PM PDT

  •  Jon, hitting it out of the park again (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I recall my folks, hardly bleeding heart liberals, telling me while I was young that it was an imperative that I find a good job that provided health insurance.  But I guess according to the new conservatism that age-old advice is no longer valid?

    Try to keep up with the right wing logic changes and you are liable to get a stiff neck.

  •  that's funny. i work with younger voters, some of (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    drmah, JerryNA, True North

    them are over 26, & ALL of them can't wait for oct 1st so they can sign up for obamacare.

  •  This is the one main issue I am worried about. (3+ / 0-)

    I am a college professor and I have brought this very subject up to my students on more than one occasion, the last time very recently....and the responses vary from:

    "If it isn't free, then I can't afford it"

     to "I work for tips and I can't afford it"

    to "What is the ACA?" (kid you not)

    to "They can't make me buy anything."

    to "I don't pay taxes so they won't know"

    to "I haven't been to a doctor since I was a kid"

    to "My parents pay for me"

    to "I don't even have insurance on my car"

    to "They are getting rid of that law" (kid you not, again)

    to "I go to the ER and they have to treat me"

    to "Maybe... if it's free."

    I'm talking 80% of those willing to talk about it, respond in this way...with much laughter and a chorus of basic "oh well".

    Those who do stand up and say how it is needed or the responsibility of it all are generally told "well, you must have money then......"  or again, "oh well"  

    It is quite disheartening, especially if the ACA is truly, truly dependent on the young adults to carry the program. I really wish I knew how to reach them but I am a lone person and if this is the attitude nationwide...then we might really have an issue.

    •  Good for you (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bailey2001, GRLionsFan

      I'm glad you're trying to reach them.

      Sometimes people need to hear about something new several times before they finally get it.

      And some of the students who weren't saying anything might well have gone away from that class thinking they would definitely sign up for ACA.

      My nephew is in university. He can't wait to sign up.

    •  I'm not surprised, (0+ / 0-)

      unfortunately.  Somehow, people think (or have been fed) the idea that Obamacare is free or that most of the cost is a complete subsidy from the tax payers.  I sure hope that the administration gets busy with better PR.

  •  I've thought for a long time that an insurance (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    policy which would pay for long term care should be required for anyone riding a motorcycle.  In our city, it seems a similar, high service policy, is needed for those who ride a bicycle.  Two teens are currently in the news for brain injury bike accidents, just the week.  Repugs might be on to something if they would pass legislation to require high risk coverage for young people.  This seems counter to their screams of no government interference.  

  •  A lot of people 18 to 34 have kids. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ksuwildkat, VinnieSaltine

    I think very few of them would opt out of insurance.

  •  As a middle class parent of a 25 year old (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Do you really think there's any other potential holiday/birthday present I would give or say I'd go halfs on depending on my finances?   Believe me a lot of parents are wondering if they can do it without telling their adult children just in case of a catastrophe or even any prolonged illness.

    •  Cheaper than cell coverage (0+ / 0-)

      I long ago figured out that I was going to be paying my kids cell phone bills until they got really good jobs and maybe not even then.  They are on my ATT family plan that is so old we actually have true unlimited data.  No way they want to give that up.  It cost me about $70 (x 4) and fortunately I can afford it.  When they turn 26 and if they have to buy from an exchange you had better believe I will gladly help.  And yes, if my child caught stupid and refused to buy I would figure out some way to secretly sign them up and pay it for them!

      It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

      by ksuwildkat on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 02:30:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Invincible passes (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GRLionsFan, Shrew in Shrewsbury

    at it usually passes long before 26.  I spent year 26 without health care for the first time in my life and it was terrifying.  I got sick one time - strep - and it cost me $75.  $75 to go to the campus health center and have a nurse give me a shot and hand me a prescription.  For context, my rent on a 3/2 house was $425 and I got paid $7.50 an hour.  Getting sick cost me 10 hours of labor.  

    Here is how I think this will play out - most kids who can stay on their parents plans until they are 26 will.  Once they have to get their own they will either have jobs that provide it or will buy through an exchange.  Some will not.  They will be in two categories:

    Too poor
    Too far right

    The poor category is easy.  The other one will be the children of the tea baggers.  The birther Obama haters who will refuse to be told they have to buy anything.  With moral righteousness they will proudly declare they are young and invincible.   And then they will get sick.  

    Within a few years not having insurance is going to cost a lot more than it does now.  Because so many more people will be covered health care providers are going to figure out that the only people who dont have coverage are the poor and the stupid.  They will jack up costs of both.  For the poor they will charge a lot and write it off as a loss.  Heck they will even proclaim that loss a civic duty.  From the stupid they will extract huge profits.  They will squeeze them and publicly proclaim they are protecting the public from free riders.  Insurance companies will make examples of people with the means and opportunity to buy coverage who didn't.  

    Not having health insurance is usually self correcting.  Getting sick even one time without it convinces most people they never want to be without it again.

    It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

    by ksuwildkat on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 02:12:37 AM PDT

  •  Health Insurance definitely pays for itself (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shrew in Shrewsbury

    I'm only 27 years old, but my health insurance has probably saved me from going broke twice in the last 3 years.

    I've had 2 hospital stays in the last 3 years despite my young age. The first wasn't expected (some serious stomach problems from ulcers that required surgery to fix), that hospital stay lasted an entire month, and I'd guestimate would have cost me over $250,000 at a minimum without health insurance, since I required a LOT of bags of IV fluids from not being able to eat or drink most of the time.

    The second hospital stay was expected and planned, heart surgery a month and a half ago that I knew I'd eventually need when I was older (I was born with congenital heart problems). That hospital stay lasted 6 days, I'd guess that stay would have cost at least $120,000 without health insurance.

    So the lesson. Even if you're young and healthy now, you can still get sick quite quickly and rack up huge medical bills.

    •  Even if if doesn't pay for itself.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Shrew in Shrewsbury

      you still need the protection.  Insurance is not an investment on which you expect to make money.  It's protection against the worst happening.

      The best thing that can happen to you is that you pay for health insurance your whole life and rarely use it, because you never get sick or hurt.  

  •  More Republican "Outreach" to Younger Voters (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Andy Cook, Shrew in Shrewsbury

    Okay, let's see how this plays out.  You're one of those rare birds -- an under-thirty who votes Republican.  You buy into your party's bullshit.  You forego insurance.  You contract leukemia, get hit by a semi or whatever.  You're facing crushing medical bills with no insurance BECAUSE YOU LISTENED TO YOUR GODDAMNED PARTY.

    Who are you (not to mention your friends) going to vote for next time?

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