Pennsylvania House Approves Bill Allowing Young Adults To Remain on Parents’ Health Insurance Policies Up To Age 29
The Pennsylvania House last week voted to approve a bill that allows state residents up to age 29 to be added to or remain on their parents' health insurance plans as long as they live in the state or are full-time students, the Harrisburg Patriot-News reports. They also must be single and not have dependents.
According to national data, young adults between ages 19 and 29 make up the largest segment of the U.S. population without health insurance. The Pennsylvania Insurance Department estimates that nearly 400,000 state residents in that age group are uninsured.
The bill allows employers to decide if they want to offer the coverage option to their employees. Families choosing to add adult dependents to their health plans will have higher premiums.
Gov. Ed Rendell (D) is expected to sign the bill, which the state Senate approved in March (Thompson, Harrisburg Patriot-News, 5/14).
Prescription for Pennsylvania Plan
In other state news, the Philadelphia Inquirer on Saturday examined the progress of the first part of Rendell's 2007 Prescription for Pennsylvania plan to expand access to health care and insurance coverage to the state's uninsured residents. Thirty-two practices in southeastern Pennsylvania are participating in the program and changed their practices into a team-oriented system that aims to change patient behavior through education efforts, tracking patients electronically and following up with patients who miss appointments. Five health insurers will pay the practices up to $13 million over three years if they meet certain goals.
According to the Inquirer, participating practices said that 44% of their 15,000 patients with diabetes have their blood sugar level under control, compared with 33% one year ago. The practices said the program provides incentives to improve their tracking capabilities and staff strengths. The program will expand next month to all regions of the state, which would include 400 primary care providers that cover 750,000 patients (Goldstein, Philadelphia Inquirer, 5/16).