Study shows Millennials are anxious about the topic of health insurance

A Blue Cross/Blue Shield study reveals generational gap in knowledge of health insurance.

Cindy Simba

New research shows that millennials — those born between the 1980s and the early 2000s — know much less about health insurance than their older counterparts.

The study, conducted by the Blue Cross Blue Shield, found that most senior citizens are familiar with health insurance and understand the terminology that pertains to it.

The study also said millennials are familiar with texting acronyms but their knowledge drops by 30 percent when it comes to health insurance terms.

For one out of five millennials, health insurance is a significant source of anxiety, the study found.

“Health insurance seems like a big stressor,” said sophomore Foluso Famuyide. He said he plans to stay on his parent’s insurance plan until he’s 26.

Under the Affordable Care Act, most people can stay on their parent’s healthcare plan until the age of 26, so becoming literate about health insurance is a task often placed on hold, some say.

“Seniors have more experience because they’ve been around a lot longer,” said Edward Arias, a retail center manager for Blue Cross, adding that experience is a cause for the generational gap.

One of the biggest challenges with choosing the right health care plan comes from having so many to choose from. Arias has three rules to follow for choosing and maintaining health insurance: taking advantage of annual reviews, talking to a professional and planning ahead.

Health insurance has become more accessible during the last few years after the ACA mandated insurance companies cannot refuse coverage over a patient’s preexisting conditions.

“Perhaps the largest benefit to having health insurance is a peace of mind,” Arias said. “You might be healthy today but you never know what tomorrow can bring, accidents or illnesses.”