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The Department of Education Responds to Healthcare Bill

1027graduationHealthcare reform is now a reality. The Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan said the vote was historical. “It was a big victory for Americans who need quality, affordable health care. It also provides financial aid to millions of students to help realize their dream of a college education.”

Just as the passage of the healthcare bill gave the Environmental Protection Agency hope that policy would soon be put into place for clean energy, it gives the Department of Education a glimpse of hope as well. Secretary Duncan continued to say, “The health care portion of the bill is headed to President Obama, and I look forward to working with the Senate this week so the education bill is ready for the President’s signature.”

A major impact on students in the new bill is the increased age limit for remaining on their parents’ health insurance up until the age of 26. This is geared towards helping those who have not graduated yet from school and cannot afford their own health insurance.

In relation to the extension of dependent coverage, the bill states: “In general, a group health plan and a health insurance issuer offering group of individual health insurance coverage that provides dependent coverage of children shall continue to make such coverage available for an adult child (who is not married) until the child turns 26 years of age.”

This portion of the bill is not intended for those who can receive coverage through their own job. However, an “adult child” is a perplexing new term. Why stop it at 26?

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