End the duopoly

How to Help Debt-Laden Grads Get Affordable Healthcare Coverage

By Kelsey Waddill

“This modest program targeted at New Yorkers with student loan debt would send a strong message in difficult and uncertain times, helping young borrowers stay current with their insurance payments and stay healthy by enrolling in coverage,” said Peter Newell, director of United Hospital Fund’s Health Insurance Project and author of the report.

As unemployment soared due to the pandemic, new graduates with little job experience faced an immense challenge getting a foothold in the job market. Many of these young adults were also saddled with high student debt payments, particularly in New York. The state had the sixth highest amount of student loan debt nationwide in 2019.

With these financial odds stacked against them, it is little wonder that a sizable portion of New York’s uninsured population falls between 19 and 34 years of age. Student loan debts absorb funds that could be put toward health insurance premiums, the report argued.

Part of the problem is that the Affordable Care Act tax credit eligibility in New York currently is based on income, excluding other financial factors such as student loan debt.

This means that graduates’ incomes may set them outside of the parameters of tax credit eligibility, but they […]

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