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Young Adult Participation in Marketplace Plans Not as Important as Health Status of All Enrollees, Experts Say

Young adult participation may not be as critical to the success of the Affordable Care Act's health insurance marketplaces as widely believed, according to a new report based on the perspectives of prominent actuaries, insurers selling plans in the marketplaces, policy researchers, and federal officials taking part in a recent meeting on the issue convened by The Commonwealth Fund.

The experts agreed there is no "right" rate of young adult enrollment to guarantee success. A more important factor in determining premiums, they say, is the health status of new health plan enrollees across all age groups. In the views of several participating in the meeting, provisions in the health reform law designed to stabilize the marketplaces will help keep premium rate increases in check.

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