Contributed Photo

Contributed Photo

A national health care system. A possible 1.2 trillion dollars in costs because of the system. What exactly does this mean for college students?

The House of Representatives narrowly passed a version of the health care reform bill President Obama has been pushing for months on Saturday afternoon. With a 220-215 vote in favor of the Affordable Health Care for America Act, the bill will now go to Senate before it can be turned into a law.

Director of the Center of Academic Excellence and Associate Professor of Economics Larry Miners said of the health care bill, “It seems to me that it hopes to provide health insurance to those who don’t have it, which may include college students.”

However, he said he does not know of any provisions in the bill specifically directed to college students.

He continued to say that he “thinks it should have a public option,” in order to keep the cost of the bill low.

In a recent article by the Wall Street Journal, which was published days before the announcement out of the White House that the health care system was approved, it is stated that students’ health care is on the decline due to the recession shortage of jobs for them and their parents. According to the article, more college students are relying on their university’s health facilities since they can receive insurance through the school rather than using a personal health insurance.

A universal health care system such as the one passed by the House would provide coverage to those citizens under 65, such as college students. However, with the astronomical price tag on the insurance bill and the current state of the economy, it is still unsure whether or not this is a positive reform for current college students.

Fairfield students have the option at the beginning of the school year whether or not they want to enroll in the University health care plan with Gallagher Koster Insurance, which costs $995, or they can override it if they have a private insurance policy with their family. The University maintains, however, that all students must be covered by some sort of insurance.

According to Interim Director of the Health Center Susan Birge, 432 students are currently on the University health insurance, which has increased in the past few years due to the economy.

She said that most Fairfield students who are covered by their parents’ insurance may be able to extend coverage until their mid-20s, when they would then have to find their own personal insurance.

Senior Allyson Wuensch said of the impact the universal health insurance will have on college students, “When we graduate, it would be good to know that there is coverage available.”

“But once we are in the job market, it will place a greater financial burden on us and currently on our parents,” she said.

About The Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.