As part of the act, people have the option to stay on their parents’s health insurance until the age of 26.
“A lot of times when young adults graduate from college, they’re no longer dependents and so they have to get their own insurance, and that makes it really hard for people who are job searching,” Lily Tinker Fortel, one of GRO's organizers, said.
Baker said she attended the event because she thought it was important for students to understand the changes the legislation would cause in the insurance industry.
“Many of the patient protection against insurance abuses go into effect today,” Baker said in a separate interview.
Baker currently works as a regional director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The changes she was referring to include banning:
- Insurance companies from dropping coverage when people contract serious medical conditions.
- Discrimination of children with pre-existing conditions.
- The lifetime limits on dollar amounts spent on coverage.
- Insurance companies from restricting choices in emergency room care.
The health care legislation affects about 20,000 people in Missouri.
Some insurers have started the provision early, but Thursday is the start date for all agencies.
Tinker Fortel, along with volunteers, handed out fliers with information about how to qualify and sign up for this coverage.