Students should be taking advantage of Obamacare

State Hornet Staff

Student Health and Counseling Services at Sacramento State are covered in your tuition and despite limited coverage, does benefit the student population. 

The service offers care for things like minor injuries, coughs and sexually transmitted diseases. 

While college students are at relatively low risk for most medical issues, accidents do happen. Without insurance that covers emergency services, students would have to pay for every sprain, incident of alcohol poisoning or possible concussion. 

If admitted into a local hospital, a sprain would cost about $1,500 and a urinary tract infection can exceed  $2,500. That is $500 more than the cost to deliver a baby.

While these prices may remain exorbitant, under Obamacare beginning Jan. 1 , there will be insurance available to even the brokest of college students. 

“Everybody in the United States is eligible to get health insurance under the Affordable Healthcare Act,” said government professor John Rosskopf. “If you can’t afford health insurance you get a subsidy from the government.”   

To do this, Medi-Cal is expanding to insure more people. The program, created in 1965, currently provides one in five Californians with health insurance and pays for 46 percent of births and 66 percent of all nursing home residents in the state.

This marks a huge change in how our healthcare system works. 

“Before the Affordable Healthcare Act, health insurance companies would deny you coverage for your pre-existing conditions. For example if you had diabetes and you tried to buy health insurance the insurance company might insure you, but anything that was diabetes related they would say is not covered under their health insurance policy,” Rosskopf said. 

In 2006 about 20 percent of college students aged 18-23 were without health insurance according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office, but  Medi-Cal will now include single adults ages 19-64 with an income of less than $15,000 a year. 

“There is a package of benefits the Affordable Healthcare Act makes available in every insurance plan and it’s all the types of insurance we all would need. It covers maternity care. It covers emergency care. It covers mental health care that many health insurance plans don’t.” said Rosskopf   

Medi-Cal expects to make 1 or 2 million more people eligible for care, on top of the already 8.5 million part of the government service. Enrolling in the program would provide members with preventative care, hospitalization coverage and emergency services for free or low cost. Eligibility will be based solely on income. 

Private healthcare providers will no longer be able to deny people health care because they think someone will be too expensive to insure. In California and across the nation, it won’t matter who you are or what income tax bracket you are in. All citizens will be able to afford health care or some will be provided for them, and we as a campus and country will be better for it. 

Obamacare will end up costing a select few more money, but ultimately the increased regulation of the healthcare system will save many of our financial futures and lives.