Skip to comments.Young Avoid New Health Plans: Early Buyers of Coverage Are Older Than Expected
Posted on 11/05/2013 10:20:47 AM PST by reaganaut1
Insurers say the early buyers of health coverage on the nation's troubled new websites are older than expected so far, raising early concerns about the economics of the insurance marketplaces.
If the trend continues, an older, more expensive set of customers could drive up prices for everyone, the insurers say, by forcing them to spread their costs around. "We need a broad range of people to make this work, and we're not seeing that right now," said Heather Thiltgen of Medical Mutual of Ohio, the state's largest insurer by individual customers. "We're seeing the population skewing older."
The early numbers, described to The Wall Street Journal by insurance executives, agents, state officials and actuaries, are still smallpartly a consequence of the continuing technical problems plaguing the federally run exchanges, experts say. HealthCare.gov, the federally run marketplace serving 36 states, is suffering serious technical problems that have prevented many people from signing up.
But the numbers demonstrate a real-world fallout from the digital snafus: Less-healthy customers are more likely to persevere through technical obstacles to gain coverage, insurers say. Younger, healthier customers who feel less need for insurancebut whose widespread participation is important to the financial success of the systemcould be quicker to give up.
The average enrollee age at Priority Health, a Michigan insurer, has ticked up to age 51 for newcomers, from about 41 years old for plans offered for the current year, said Joan Budden, chief marketing officer. Arise Health Plan, Wisconsin's largest nonprofit insurer, said more than half its 150 signees are over 50, a higher proportion than expected, while declining to be specific on its target age.
Industry experts cautioned that, a month into the health law's enrollment period, it is too soon to say what insurers' final pool of members will look like.
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
Death spiral as young buyers avoid high cost plans leading to higher costs.
Obamacare abolished the State Programs. The Federal Government, unfortunately, must now “fix” that problem.
Having said that, many of the people that I assistd with the State “HIgh Risk Pool” needed that service due to no fault of their own, the COBRA ran out, etc. However, MANY were alos irresponsible people who thought they were “bulletproof” and then demanded coverage AFTER they got sick.
No plan can change human nature. That is the biggest problem with Obamacare, as it attempts to change human behavior.
However, let us be realistic about our “end game” here. Allow Obamacare to “survive” as a National High Risk Pool. Eliminate the mandates and penalties for the rest of us who are healthy.
And by the way: The Courts might well be on the way to doing this at the Federal Exchange level.
All of those SICK people are going to Obamcare! I am positive that the majority of the applicants, so far, are unhealthy people.
So policies under Obamacare will end up being in a defacto high risk pool with everybody else subsidizing it.
“Buyers”. Sure. More like freeloaders I would bet.
When I transitioned off COBRA to private insurance I didn't have to worry about my pre-existing condition, since the law mandated that private insurers take people from COBRA without regard to pre-existing conditions.
It's amazing how many people (politicians) pretend that this law hasn't existed for the past 20 years or so.
Free stuff sells! Who knew?
As Jim Kuntlser noted yesterday in his weekly blog entry, O’care is merely the libtards last gasp at grift.
Yes I agree, but the laws were not the same in every State.
Notice how the Uninsured used to be “victims” but now the Uninsured are “deadbeats”?
SAME group of people involved but different political needs today, among the elite!
Wait...young people who don’t have the money to buy health insurance aren’t buying it?
NO WAY! WHODASAWDATCOMIN!
Some are victims and some are indeed deadbeats. I know lots of people who simply chose to not insure themselves because they think they're healthy enough, and they figure that if something major happens that someone will wind up treating them anyway.
That aspect won't change, because a $90/year fine is still going to be far more desirable to people than paying hundreds per month.
It’s pretty frustrating to see all the things we were telling them would happen, happen,
and more frustrating that they’re trying to deny that they are happening.
They wouldn’t listen and will keep denying because to do otherwise would be admitting that we were right and they were wrong. And they can’t do that because the reason for being liberal, to them, is to be superior to others.
Folks under 50 who have to decide between a housing/rent payment and an insurance premium. Which do you think they will choose?