This State Health Policy Monitor gives an overview of the key features of state laws designed to expand dependent coverage options for young adults.
Policy makers are becoming aware that young adults are the fastest growing group of uninsured in America. In fact, they are more likely to be uninsured than any other age group. Nearly one-third (30 percent) of young adults ages 19-29 are uninsured. From 2004 to 2005, the number of uninsured adults ages 19-29 increased from 12.9 million to 13.3 million – an increase that accounted for 30 percent of the growth in the number of uninsured Americans under the age of 65 during this period.
In an effort to address this issue, 19 states have passed laws that require some insurers to allow older dependents to remain enrolled in their parents’ health insurance plans. Sixteen of these laws were passed in 2006 and 2007.