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Blog: Affordable Care Act Helping Young People

New U.S. Census data show that the number of people without health insurance climbed to 49.9 million in 2010, up from 49 million in 2009. In a recent blog post, The Commonwealth Fund's Sara R. Collins, Tracy Garber, and Karen Davis point out that the Census report also shows a reversal in the decade-long increase in the number of young adults without health insurance: about 500,000 more young adults had insurance coverage in 2010, compared with 2009. This change is likely attributable to the Affordable Care Act, which requires health plans to let young adults under age 26 stay on or join their parents' health plan.

"The new Census data reveal that the early provisions of the Affordable Care Act are already having an effect on health insurance coverage," the authors say. "But the erosion in employer coverage resulting from job losses and fewer companies offering health insurance underscore the need for the full implementation of the law in 2014."

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