As a parent, nothing gives us more peace of mind than knowing that our children can pursue their dreams without unfair limitations. This is why I’m excited to announce that millions more young adults in America now have health insurance coverage thanks to the health care law – enabling them to pursue their goals without worrying about what will happen if they get sick.
The provision in the law allowing young adults to remain on their parents’ health insurance until age 26 has resulted in 2.5 million young people gaining coverage, according to analysis based on new data released today by the National Center for Health Statistics.
Families around the country are benefitting from this part of the law, including families like the Houghs, whose daughter Natalie was diagnosed with a rare heart condition after suffering a cardiac arrest at school. Her condition requires a lifetime of medication and care. There was a day when this diagnosis would mean insurance companies would either not cover Natalie or would offer her unaffordable plans. It would mean that Natalie and her family would have to keep paying, or face the unimaginable alternative.
Now, thanks to the health care law, Natalie can stay on her family’s plan and has started college. And, by the time she turns 26, it will be illegal for a plan to deny coverage to anyone, regardless of their health and Natalie will have access to quality, affordable care.
Today’s news is more evidence of the good things the health care law is doing for young people and their families. More young adults in this country can now go on and live their lives with less worry about visiting their doctor when they get sick, or incurring catastrophic medical bills if they are in an accident. And for us parents, this lets us breathe a sigh of relief.
Kathleen Sebelius is the Secretary of Health and Human Services