The study, printed in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, assessed individuals’ health, access to care and use of health care both before and after the application of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).
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The PPACA was executed in September 2010, and part of its dictate was that insurance companies had to permit adults younger than 26 years of age to continue being covered by their parents’ health insurance policy.
Previous to this alteration, the authors report that just about 1 in 3 young adults aged 19-25 lacked every form of health insurance provision. Ever since then, the percentage of uninsured Americans decreased in 2011 – a decline accredited in part to the expansion of insurance coverage amongst this age group.
Even though many have supposed that augmented insurance coverage directs to optimistic health outcomes for the population, the effect of the PPACA on the health of young adults and their access to health care is unidentified. And there had been some rumors of complaints.
A crew of researchers from the University of Washington in Seattle, led by Dr. Meera Kotagal, studied data from two nationally representative reviews in order to better measure the influence of the PPACA on the access to care and health of young adults aged 19-25.
The researchers utilize data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) and the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), matching results data from 2009 with data from 2012. From these studies, the researchers associated a group of young adults (19-25 years) with an older crowd (26-34 years).
The authors discovered that between 2009 and 2012, health insurance coverage for the 19- to 25-year-olds augmented from 68.3% to 77.8%. For the 26- to 34-year-old group, coverage dropped from 77.8% to 70.3%.
The researchers discovered that there was a general weakening in the probability of having a normal source of health care; nonetheless this drop was more distinct in the 26- to 34-year-old participants.
From 2009 and 2012, there was awfully minute change in health status concerning the two groups. The quantity of participants who reported receiving a mundane checkup in the past year and being able to provide dental care, medicine and physician visits did not alter suggestively in each age group.
The study as well discovered that individuals with health insurance coverage were more possible than those without to have a normal source of care, get routine checkups and flu shots and to be able to manage to pay for several forms of health care, like dental care and prescription medication.
Significant to ‘address access and quality’
The authors declare that their study “confirms that health care coverage for young adults has increased but that young adults do not report improved health status, affordability of health care, or use of flu vaccinations compared with their older counterparts.”
The study is restricted in that all of the data from the NHIS and BRFSS were self-reported and consequently may not precisely mirror the health of the contributors. The researchers furthermore doubt whether the link group of 26- to 34-year-olds was the most appropriate for the study.
“Understanding the PPACA’s full impact on young adults may require focus on those who consume more health care, such as those with chronic disease,” say the authors.
The discovery that improved coverage has not caused in better health status for young adults aged 19-25 years leads the authors to determine that “health policy must continue to address access and quality in addition to coverage.”