The answer is obvious, right?
They take up more seats, require more server time, and eat more food.
Why do I ask?
As the GOP moves to Repeal & Replace ObamaCare, a constant refrain is ‘everybody agrees that two popular parts of ObamaCare should be saved: insurability for pre-existing conditions and allowable coverage of ‘adult- children’ on their parents’ policies until they are 26”.
I agree that there needs to be a way to cover pre-existing conditions, but … except for special needs situations, I respectfully disagree re: adult-children.
First, the term “adult-children” gives me the creeps. But, that’s beside the point.
More on point, I don’t care if insurance companies have to carry 26 year olds on their parents’ policies, but I don’t understand why they should “fly free” and that you & I should have to pay for it … not the adult-children’s parents.
Let me explain …
Now, practically all employer-sponsored health insurance plans charge premiums in tiers: employee only, employee plus spouse, employee plus children, and employee plus spouse and children. Note: it doesn’t matter if the employee has 1 child or a dozen children … same premium.
For example, the United Healthcare plan through Georgetown — which is probably pretty typical — charges:
Let’s dive a little deeper into those numbers …
Note that it costs $7,346 to tack a spouse (or equivalent) — presumably an adult — onto an employee’s policy.
Then it costs an additional $5,746 to tack one or more children onto the policy.
Said differently, it costs $5,746 to add one child to the policy and nothing to add more kids to the policy.
So, those kids are “free”, right?
Absolutely not !
True, the adult-children’s parents don’t pay additional premiums.
But, each additional kid still adds costs to the system — probably about the same as the first child– $5,746.
That unpaid cost simply gets spread across all policy holders in the form of higher premiums.
So, back to the 26 year old adult-children …. I’m ok if they get tacked onto their parents’ policies and pay $5,746 … but, I’m not ok being forced to pay for them.
All of which raises a broader issue: Why are children of any age riding free on health insurance policies?
Why not charge $5,746 for all kids, not just the first one?