Unemployed African American and Latino women are the most likely millennials to be uninsured in this era of “health coverage for all.”
That is what a survey conducted by Harris and commissioned by the nonprofit Transamerica Center for Health Studies found when it interviewed millennials about their health insurance.
The good news is that the sheer numbers of millennials without health insurance is dropping, from 23 percent in 2013 to 11 percent in the latest survey.
When those without coverage were asked why they hadn’t purchased it yet, their response overwhelmingly was because they couldn’t afford it. Either the insurance itself was out of reach, or the cost of copays and other fees made health insurance too expensive for them.
According to the CDC, the uninsured rate dropped to 9.1 percent last year, a record low.
Disturbingly, many of those without coverage reported that they simply do nothing about a health condition because they feared they would be financially disabled if they sought medical treatment.
The survey found that Latino millennials are the least likely to have coverage, at 17 percent, with African American millennials right behind them at 15 percent. Asians had the lowest uninsured rate: 3 percent.
On a gender basis, women in the 18 to 36 range were more likely than men to go without insurance, and those without a job also were more likely to be uninsured.
The survey also asked respondents whether they had had any health issues lately and, if so, what they were.
More than half said they had, with the top conditions listed as depression (17 percent), weight issues (15 percent overweight and 7 percent obesity), and anxiety disorders (14 percent).
Participants were also asked to whom they turned for health information, and touchingly, a mother or stepmom was the No. 1 response, at 64 percent. Dads were way behind at 36 percent. Another quarter said they rely on a spouse or partner for such information.
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