Voting with Your Dollars: 3 Strategies for Getting Millennials to Buy Into ObamaCare

When Barack Obama was elected President in 2008 (and re-elected in 2012), it was largely because of the efforts of Millennials, the generation of people who are approximately 18-34 years old.  The impact of youth on these elections is well-known, but did you know that the President needs Millennials just as much now to ensure the success of his healthcare reform initiative?  This time, he’s asking that Millennials vote with their DOLLARS instead of casting an election ballot.

The Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as “ObamaCare,” expands access to healthcare to all people through a variety of initiatives.  One of them is to offer more affordable and accessible health insurance through online exchanges, which officially opened for business on October 1, 2013.  As an incentive to participate, ObamaCare has established a “shared responsibility requirement” (aka a $95+ fine that will increase to $695+ in 2016) for anyone who does not obtain some form of health insurance.  Now, here’s where the more than 19 million uninsured Millennials come in.  According to, “Insuring young, healthy people helps balance out the risk of covering older, sicker adults.  But if America’s 20- and 30-somethings don’t sign up, the fear is that premiums could spiral out of control.”  If that happens, we’re essentially right back where we started.

The impact of Millennials on the success of ObamaCare really struck me, not only because I am a Millennial, but because PadillaCRT’s Debbie Myers and I have spoken extensively on the topic of communicating with Millennials.  I thought, “Is there anything in our learnings that would help connect with Millennials and encourage them to get insured?”  Below are three strategies to support Millennial enrollment in health exchanges, based upon our research:

In order to be successful, the administration is hoping to enroll approximately 2.7 million (or less than 15%) of uninsured Millennials in health exchanges.  With the right strategy, it’s possible to get Millennials to embrace access and coverage for themselves – and their neighbors.

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