How Many of Us are on Drugs? Startling Prescription Statistics

The two countries in the world with the highest addiction rates to drugs are New Zealand and Iran. The two countries, however, have addiction issues to two totally separate substances. In New Zealand, the issue is cannabis, while in Iran, they lead the world in addiction to opiates. Following Iran, Afghanistan is second in opiate addiction, followed by Russia, Maldives, Ukraine, Macau and the United States. Without question, opiate addiction is an issue not only in the United States but around the globe. There is a crisis that needs to be addressed and the need is apparent.

There is the issue of legally prescribed drugs. These are FDA approved drugs that are prescribed by licensed physicians in the United States. When one begins to look into the statistics involving these completely legal, professionally prescribed drugs, what one finds can be even more disturbing.

It should be noted that prescription drugs are on a level more serious than over-the-counter drugs. Anyone can purchase over-the-counter drugs to control headaches, fever and minor aches and pains. A person is only provided a prescription drug if their condition warrants more serious treatment.

That being said, most estimates say that over 50% of Americans are taking at least one prescription drug. That means over half of us have a serious enough condition to be treated by a drug prescribed by a professional. A Mayo Clinic survey places that number closer to 70% and perhaps, just as startling, is the fact that the Mayo Clinic says 20% of us are on FIVE OR MORE PRESCRIPTION DRUGS.

One of the issues with healthcare in the United States is it is expensive. The fact that so many of us are taking legally prescribed drugs is a contributing factor.

The point is you should ask questions of your physician about why certain drugs are being prescribed. Just because the costs are being taken care of by insurance shouldn’t abdicate your responsibility to your healthcare or your inquisitiveness. Ask questions, get answers and take more control of your healthcare. You will likely be better for it.

If you are struggling with the high costs of healthcare, contact us. Let us see how we can help you find efficient solutions.

Adulting 101: When and How Adult Children Become Responsible for Their Own Health Insurance

As any parent can attest, time flies. Not only do children grow up quickly, once they reach 16 years of age, time seems to accelerate even faster. In that next decade, most young people will drive, graduate from high school, attend college or start a career and perhaps even marry. One of the last stages of growing into an adult is taking responsibility for one’s own health care. Welcome to Adulting 101: Taking Care of Your Own Health Insurance.

Current Coverage Under the Law

According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, if a parent’s health insurance plan covers children, they can add or keep their children on their health insurance policy until they turn 26 years of age. What’s more, these adult children can remain under their parent’s insurance coverage until 26, even if they are married or not living at home. Furthermore, children can stay covered by parent’s health insurance even if they are not financially dependent on their parents or are eligible to enroll in their own employer’s plan. Of course, if they are attending school, they can also remain on their parent’s plan.

What Happens at 26 Years Old?

Adulting and health insurance reaches a milestone when an adult child turns 26 years of age. Upon a person’s 26th birthday, they are no longer eligible for the “under 26” benefits listed above and qualify for a special enrollment period for coverage. This allows them to acquire coverage beyond the traditional Open Enrollment Period.

Once turning 26, an individual should accept a plan offered by their employer, or should seek out a health insurance plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace. One of the last strings attaching children to parents are being cut.

While health insurance may not be perfect, the period to phase in individual coverage for young people is more than generous. This allows families and individuals time to make adjustments in their life throughout a period when people are starting their careers or finishing school. Should you have any questions about health insurance, we invite you to contact our professionals to learn more.