‘Outside-the-box thinking includes how they approach health care,’ says Alliance of Health Care Sharing Ministries’ Katy Talento
February 14, 2022
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Many millennials—typically defined as people born from 1982 to 2000, ranging in age from 22 to 40—think differently from previous generations in many areas of their lives, from work to leisure choices. It’s often the same when it comes to health care.
“This is a time when many have to make their own choices in health care for themselves and in many instances, for their families,” said Katy Talento, executive director of the Alliance of Health Care Sharing Ministries (The Alliance, ahcsm.org).
In 2019, millennials surpassed baby boomers as the nation’s largest living adult generation, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The baby-boom generation number about 71 million, while millennials comprise more than 72 million.
According to Forbes, millennials are far more likely to seek digital access to health care services, seek medical information from sources other than physicians, demand cost transparency, and orchestrate their own care instead of relying on a referral from a physician. Likewise, millennials appreciate the “solution-driven” nature and convenience of on-demand health care, with shorter wait times, virtual telemedicine communication and clearer pricing models.
“For some millennials, outside-the-box thinking includes how they approach health care,” Talento stated. “Many are seeking different modes of care than the traditional long-term relationship with an in-person primary care doctor. Instead, they are opting for the convenience of walk-in clinics and telemedicine. Another key priority for this demographic is the option to seek alternative healing methods, such as nutritional and health coaches, naturopathic providers, chiropractors, acupuncturists and others. Many of our member ministries share in expenses arising from these outside-the-box health care approaches.
“This is one reason that many Health Care Sharing Ministries are so attractive to millennials,” Talento said. “They facilitate freedom of choice. Members are able to save money by sharing costs with other members, often with access to a broader set of services, and the ministries also help negotiate prices and offer up-to-date medical information.”
One Alliance-affiliated ministry reports that at least one quarter of its membership is composed of households headed by millennials.
“In addition to providing more choices, Health Care Sharing Ministries members encourage each other through prayers and letters, which is not something you see with health insurance,” Talento commented.
Founded in 2007 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., the Alliance of Health Care Sharing Ministries is a 501(c)(6) trade organization representing the common interests of Health Care Sharing Ministry organizations which are facilitating the sharing of health care needs (financial, emotional, and spiritual) by individuals and families, and their participants. The Alliance engages with federal and state regulators, members of the media, and the Christian community to provide accurate and timely information on medical cost sharing.