Critical Condition

NRO’s health-care blog.

Who Will Cover the Unwed Children’s Children?


It looks like conservatives have settled on a noble destiny for Obamacare: Repeal. It’ll be a tough struggle, so we’d better keep our sense of humor.

In that spirit, I share an article by Huffington Post reporter Jason Linkins, who looks forward to the White House promoting the fact that health insurers now have to cover beneficiaries’ children up to the age of 26. Or, as Mr. Linkins describes it, “until they’re old enough to go on unemployment with the rest of America.”

And this provision went into effect as soon as the president signed the bill [H.R. 3590 § 1105]! No word yet on when the rest of America is expected to “go on unemployment.”

The idea of a 26-year old “child” is curious in itself. However, there are a couple of limitations: The “child” has to be unmarried, and the coverage does not include the “child of a child receiving dependent coverage” [§ 2714(a)].

So, just to make it clear: The law will compel an employer to pay for health insurance for an employee’s unmarried, unemployed, 25-year old son or daughter; but doesn’t compel the 25-year old to pay for his or her own baby — the employee’s grandchild.

I guess that’s what they call “social justice” under Obamacare.

— John R. Graham is director of Health Care Studies at the Pacific Research Institute.


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