Millennials are changing the world around them, and in the realm of healthcare, the impact of this generation is not entirely positive. Many millennials are living different lives than generations before them, opting to work in unique career fields, travel more frequently, and delay starting a family. While these lifestyle choices are fine, fitting in conventional healthcare with regular visits to the doctor is not a priority of millennials, and this results in an overall reduced quality of care. Read on to get a close look at how millennials handle their health and the ways you might improve your quality of care if you are part of this tech-savvy generation.
Millennial Healthcare Trends
Without job security, young adults may not have employee-provided health insurance, and they will not make a priority of finding adequate coverage through a process that can be somewhat confusing. Those who don’t have health insurance — and even some young adults who do — are lacking a key component of their care, a primary physician. When millennials do see the doctor — a trip that tends to only occur when something is wrong — they will opt for a retail clinic or urgent care facility, where they are seen by the first available physician. This means that any ongoing care is poorly coordinated and follow-up for emergency care is virtually non-existent. Plus, millennials who follow these patterns in seeking healthcare are avoiding the critical component of preventive visits, which can address reproductive health, heart health, and other aspects that will be very important later in life.
Shortsighted Medical Decision Making
Because young adults generally do not experience serious health problems or have chronic illnesses, they feel a sense of invincibility that can derail them from seeking the right medical care. Even when millennials do feel sick, they tend to rely on Google or WebMD to self-diagnose, which is in itself creating lots of potential for misinformed healthcare decisions. What’s more is that millennials are driven toward less healthy decisions, including cigarette smoking. Millennials have reversed a trend in smoking in the United States, as there was a significant decline in smokers among previous generations, but more millennials are choosing to pick up the habit.
For millennials seeking quick and convenient care, MeMD can provide an alternative to costly emergency room visits and trips to urgent care. While our services will not fill in for having a primary physician, we can offer a place to turn when you do need to see a doctor right away, and would prefer not to pay for expensive out-of-pocket care.