Monday, June 24, 2013

Navigating health insurance after graduation: Advice for the Class of 2013

The big news in the Schick family earlier this month…my son’s graduation from Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, VA – my alma mater! The commencement was beautiful and the speaker, Katie Couric, bestowed her wisdom and life advice on the graduates, and got me thinking about advice in general.

The Schick family with the president of Randolph-Macon College, Robert Lindgren
I had the opportunity to spend a few minutes with the commencement speaker, Katie Couric

One piece of advice that recent college grads must consider has to do with health insurance.  Some lucky graduates have jobs lined up with health benefits.  God bless ’em.  My son is not one of the lucky few.  So as he begins his search, he, like many others, may have to stay on our family health plan until he lands a job.

But many grads may go uninsured.  In fact, the U.S. Census measures that nearly three in ten people age 19 to 35 are uninsured, the highest proportion among all groups.

Statistically speaking, people in the 19-35 age group are typically fairly healthy. But nobody is free from the risk of being in an accident or developing a disease, and it’s important that young adults make smart decisions to protect their future health and finances.

So, here’s my advice:
  •  Don’t risk going uninsured. If you are eligible, consider staying on your parents’ health insurance plan until you turn 26.  Buying your own individual coverage, however, may actually be more affordable, so be sure to compare the cost.
  •  If you decide to buy your own coverage, make sure to include all health costs when determining how much you can afford, including monthly premiums and any out-of-pocket costs for health care services and prescriptions.
  •  Ask questions. Solicit parents’ and family members’ advice, check out reputable insurance company websites or visit with a local independent insurance broker to learn the basics about health insurance.
  • Consider a high deductible health plan. For many young, healthy people, high deductible plans make sense because they provide quality coverage at lower premium rates.
  • Consider short term health insurance plans that can offer you temporary coverage for the remainder of 2013. Be sure to find a plan that lets you drop your coverage without penalty if you find a job with employer-sponsored health insurance benefits in the meantime.
  • Do your homework.  Check out this video for more information
While you may or may not follow my advice on this one, when I asked my UHC team about the power of really good advice, an interesting theme emerged; most people, even young people, are inspired by advice that calls them to action, pushes them to get results and move forward without regrets. 

My husband and son (front left) walk with other parents and students as students prepare to receive their degree.
My son, Andy, says the job market is really tough. But, he has a final interview this week so he may have a full-time gig soon…can you say “proud Mom”?

Congratulations class of 2013!

1 comment:

  1. Life insurance is very important and it is the best way to save money. If you are busy person and have no any time to go insurance company and you can easily get insurance in the internet.
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