Sign Up for Email Alerts Visit us on Twitter Visit us on Facebook Visit us on YouTube Subscribe to RSS Feeds

Home > Past Briefings > Briefing Detail Page

Briefing Detail Page

Change Text Size:   Smaller Text Size   Larger Text Size   Default Text Size    

The New Health Reform Law and Young Adults

Monday, May 24, 2010

Young adults have some of the highest uninsurance rates in America. In 2008, three in 10 uninsured Americans– almost 14 million people – were between 19 and 29 years of age. As the health reform legislation was developed, it became evident that covering the uninsured in this age group would be a major component of the effort to improve quality and lower costs in our health care system.

The law requires insurers to allow dependent children to remain on their parents’ plans until age 26. But who qualifies as a dependent? Will young adults fall through the cracks between September 23, 2010, when the age-26 provision becomes active, and policy renewal periods? How does the federal law affect state laws on the same subject? What requirements apply to self-insured employers? How might policies offered through colleges be affected? What other ways are the young adult uninsured able to get coverage under the new law? What can be learned from the experience in Massachusetts, where special provisions affecting young adults were included in their reform law?

To address these and related questions, the Alliance for Health Reform and The Commonwealth Fund sponsored a May 24 briefing. Panelists were: Roland McDevitt, head of the health research group at the consulting firm Towers Watson; Sara Collins, vice president of the Affordable Health Insurance Program of The Commonwealth Fund; and Kaitlyn Kenney, director of policy at the Massachusetts Health Connector. Ed Howard of the Alliance moderated.


 Ed Howard, Alliance for Health Reform, Moderator
 Sara Collins, The Commonwealth Fund, Speaker
 Roland McDevitt, Towers Watson, Speaker
 Kaitlyn Kenney, Massachusetts Health Connector , Speaker
(Click on the camera icon to see a video of the speaker's presentation.)

Transcript, Event Summary and/or Webcast and Podcast

Transcript: Transcript (Word Document), 5/24/2010
Full Webcast/Podcast: The New Health Reform Law and Young Adults

The full webcast and podcast for this briefing, as well as videos of individual speakers' presentations, are provided by Kaiser Family Foundation.

Speaker Presentations

Sara Collins Presentation (PowerPoint), 5/24/2010
Roland McDevitt Presentation (PowerPoint), 5/24/2010
Kaitlyn Kenney Presentation (PowerPoint), 5/24/2010

(If you want to download one or more slides from these presentations, contact us at info@allhealth or click here for instructions.)

Source Materials

Federal Employee Health Program Unlikely To Extend Young Adult Coverage On Parents' Plan This Year (Adobe Acrobat PDF), Kaiser Health News, 4/1/2010
- Jessica Marcy
Speaker Biographies (Word Document), , 5/24/2010
Agenda (Word Document), , 5/24/2010

Offsite Materials (briefing documents saved on other websites)

Rite of Passage? Why Young Adults Become Uninsured and How New Policies Can Help, 2009 Update, The Commonwealth Fund, 1/1/2009
Timeline for Health Care Reform Implementation: Health Insurance Provisions, The Commonwealth Fund, 4/1/2010
What Will Happen Under Health Reform – And What’s Next? , The Commonwealth Fund, 5/1/2010
Young, Uninsured, and Seeking Change: Health Coverage of Young Adults and Their Views on Health Reform, The Commonwealth Fund, 1/1/2009
- L. Nicholson and Sara R. Collins
Health Reform: What Does It Mean for Young Adults? , Children’s Defense Fund, 1/1/2010
IRS Issues Notice on Tax Implications of Extending Coverage to Adult Children, The Erisa Industry Committee, 5/1/2010
Young Adults and the Affordable Care Act: Protecting Young Adults and Eliminating Burdens on Families and Businesses, HHS, 5/1/2010
FAQ: Young Adults and the Affordable Care Act: Protecting Young Adults and Eliminating Burdens on Families and Businesses , HHS, 5/1/2010
Young adults eager for parents' health insurance plans,, 5/1/2010
- Sandy Smith
EXPLAINING HEALTH CARE REFORM: Questions About the Extension of Dependent Coverage to Age 26, Kaiser Family Foundation Focus on Health Reform, 5/1/2010
How Will Health Reform Impact Young Adults?, Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, 5/1/2010
- Karyn Schwartz and Tanya Schwartz
HHS Outlines Rule for Young Adult Health Coverage, Medpage Today , 5/1/2010
- Joyce Frieden
Affordable Health Insurance for Young Adults:Which health plan or policy is best? We offer healthcare coverage advice for 8 different situations, US News and World Report, 4/1/2010
- Megan Johnson


Sara Collins, vice president for Affordable Health Insurance at The Commonwealth Fund, explained how the new health reform law will help young adults at the May 24 briefing cosponsored by the Fund. (10 min.)

Roland McDevitt, director of health care research for Towers Watson, discussed how businesses will be affected by the health reform law's provisions expanding coverage for young adults. From the May 24 briefing cosponsored by The Commonwealth Fund. (12 min.)

Kaitlyn Kenney, director of policy and research at the Health Connector in Massachusetts, discusses how young adults get health coverage in her state through health plans designed especially for them. From the May 24 briefing cosponsored by The Commonwealth Fund. (9 min.)


Toolkit: Emergency Preparedness in the U.S.: The Ebola Threat

Is the U.S. prepared for a potential virulent pandemic? This new Alliance toolkit examines public health infrastructure, funding and policy levers that deal with these kinds of health crises in America.

Read More 

Mike Leavitt Video: Consolidation and Control-The Evolving Health Care System

Mike Leavitt, chairman of Leavitt Partners and former HHS secretary, addresses the aggressive repositioning of players in the evolving health care system in a new Alliance for Health Reform video.

Read More 

Telemedicine Toolkit: The Promise and Challenges

The integration of technology and health care is on the rise. Although evidence shows that telemedicine has improved access to health care and resulted in lower costs in rural and underserved areas, challenges to expansion include reimbursement policies and acceptable security measures. A new Alliance for Health Reform Toolkit, “Telemedicine: The Promise and Challenges,” addresses the effectiveness of telemedicine as a tool for communication, as well as the expected outcomes and challenges ahead.

Read More 

Toolkit on Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS)

The aging of the baby boomers and the increase in the number of old-old persons (those 85 and older) are predictors for the increasing need for long-term services and supports (LTSS). Among persons age 65 and over, an estimated 70 percent will use LTSS. A new Alliance for Health Reform toolkit, “Long-Term Services and Supports: Changes and Challenges in Financing and Delivery,” provides a background on LTSS and discusses policy issues surrounding the topic.

Read More 

Experts Discuss Workplace Wellness Programs

In a new interview video, Karen Pollitz, senior fellow, private insurance and health reforms, The Kaiser Family Foundation and Dan Newton, vice president, product/solutions development and behavior economics, Anthem Care Management discuss the impact of workplace wellness programs. They address questions about regulations and program design and analyze the scope of wellness programs.

Read More 

Alliance Search for New CEO

WASHINGTON, DC (Aug. 3) – Edward F. Howard, founding executive vice president and CEO of the Alliance for Health Reform in Washington, DC, will retire in March 2016. A nationwide search is underway for his successor.

Over the years, the Alliance has presented hundreds of seminars on Capitol Hill and elsewhere, has organized briefings for reporters around the country and has prepared dozens of issue briefs and “toolkits,” as well as a series of highly-regarded sourcebooks for reporters on health policy topics.

Dr. Robert Graham, Chairman of the Board, noted that the search for a new CEO is being coordinated by Association Strategies of Alexandria, Va. Those interested in learning more about this opportunity should email or call 703/ 683-0580. You can also view the position profile on their website. The deadline for applications is Monday, October 12. 

Read More
Position Profile

Read More 

Toolkit on Biosimilars

The Alliance for Health Reform has released a new toolkit, “Biosimilars: Unpacking Complex Issues.”

The Affordable Care Act created an expedited licensure pathway for biosimilars, and, in March 2015, the U.S. approved the first biosimilar, leaving policy makers, regulators, providers and stakeholders to grapple with regulatory and financial questions.

Biosimilars are similar – but not identical – to biologic drugs, and cost less. Unlike traditional pharmaceuticals, biologic drugs are derived from living organisms and tissues, making them more complex and expensive to produce.

Read More 

Copyright 1997-2015 Alliance for Health Reform
1444 Eye Street, NW, Suite 910 Washington, DC 20005-6573      202-789-2300      202-789-2233 fax      Sitemap