By Sarah Varney, Kaiser Health News
Researchers at the RAND Corporation set out to find some hard data on one aspect of the health law: Does having medical insurance protect young adults from the financial ruin that often comes with a major injury or illness?
The quick answer: Yes, it does.
Since September 2010, the Affordable Care Act has allowed young adults to remain on their parents’ medical insurance until they turn 26, and an estimated 3.1 million young people have taken advantage of the new rule.
The RAND researchers looked at nearly a half a million visits young adults made to emergency departments around the country before and after the under-26 provision took effect.
“We looked at just the most serious conditions,” said Andrew Mulcahy, an associate policy researcher at the RAND Corporation. Mulcahy and his colleagues pored over actual hospital records for bone fractures, poison, traumatic brain injuries, and other incidents that would require an urgent trip to the hospital. Continue reading