Insuring More Latinos Could Rein in Health Care Costs
"[C]ontrary to the conventional wisdom, increasing the number of insured Latinos" into the health insurance pool could "help mitigate the approaching crisis" of an aging population driving up health care costs, David Hayes-Bautista, professor of medicine at UCLA, writes in a Los Angeles Times opinion piece.
Hayes-Bautista notes that "Latinos have far lower death rates than non-Latino whites" for heart disease, cancer and stroke.
"If properly incorporated, the inclusion of a few million more healthy, employed, low-service-use Latinos into the health insurance pool would provide a timely 'shock absorber' for the costs of the inevitable baby boomer crunch over the next two to three decades," Hayes-Bautista writes.
He adds that because "of their youth, these newly incorporated Latinos would" keep costs low by paying into the health insurance pool and making "few demands" for costly services such as heart transplants and hip replacements (Hayes-Bautista, Los Angeles Times, 10/6).