The arrival of a newborn or the celebration of a marriage are among the most important life milestones. And if it seems like more weddings and baby showers have suddenly popped onto the calendar, it is not just your imagination.
The pandemic is fueling both a wedding and baby boom, according to experts. Both booms are a little more complex than simple surges, and we’ll get into that in a minute. But first, we know that after the celebration winds down, the responsibility of this new phase of life settles in for the new parent or partner. Starting a new family or embarking on married life brings both joy and a new level of financial maturity and family considerations.
Fortunately, both births and weddings are life events that open up the opportunity to enroll in a health insurance plan through Nevada Health Link. So, while general insurance enrollment through Nevada Health Link is currently closed until the November 1 open enrollment period begins, these “qualifying life events” allow new parents or the newly married (among others) to enroll in insurance plans to cover their new life circumstances.
In many ways it is the perfect combination, a life-changing milestone and the insurance to cover the ones you love.
The Baby Boom
While researchers are predicting a strong baby boom, it actually follows a swift slowdown in births at the beginning of the pandemic. Researchers tracked a 14 percent decrease in births between the end of 2020 and the spring of 2021, correlating directly to the conception window at the start of the pandemic. Experts point to the economic uncertainty, lack of childcare and other pandemic-fueled concerns as the reason birth rates dropped.
But now University of Michigan researchers are using electronic medical record data to model an uptick in births expected to reach 10 -15 percent above normal.
This baby boom should not be surprising. The U.S. has a long history of societal changes influencing reproductive choice. Most famously, the post-World-War-II baby boom was a society-shaping demographic shift, but other noteworthy global events such as the 1918 pandemic, the Great Depression and the Great Recession all influenced birth rates.
Weddings on the Rise
Just like couples and families delayed decisions on whether to add to the family during the start of the pandemic, engaged couples had few options to tie the knot. With gatherings of any size restricted or difficult during the height of the pandemic, weddings were moved down the calendar. But, of course, the delay only meant that the celebrations were going to surge as soon as the pandemic abated and restrictions were lifted.
That is what is happening now. Postponed weddings are stacking on top of the regular flow of weddings, creating a wedding boom that makes it hard to book locations, ministers and planners.
“This year with the rollout of the vaccine and states opening up, weddings are coming like a tidal wave,” wedding planner Tzo Ai Ang told Bride magazine.
Just like the baby boom, the wedding boom is also influenced by the uncertainty and challenging aspects of the pandemic. Historically, researchers have made a connection between stressful times — specifically natural disasters and global events like 9/11 — and a surge in weddings or a decrease in divorces. During trying times relationships and the idea of weathering a turbulent period with a partner become increasingly appealing.
Qualifying Life Events
As these celebrations unfold, insurance has never been easier to access or more affordable to attain. These qualifying life events — which also include the adoption of a child, divorce, or moving to a new service area — allow you to enroll through Nevada Health Link within 60 days of the event date.
These events also allow enrollment for the entire family. So, while the birth of a newborn might come with new healthcare costs, insurance can help offset these costs for the newborn, mother, father and any siblings. Just be aware that the birth of the child (and not the pregnancy) is the qualifying life event that allows you to enroll in insurance outside of open enrollment dates.
Nevada Health Link offers many different health insurance plans to choose from and the ability to compare cost and coverage to find the right plan for you and your family. So, if you are a newlywed or a new parent, log on to Nevada Health Link and see how much you could save on insurance while locking in health coverage for yourself, your partner, your brand-new baby, or everyone in your family. We’ve excited for you, and proud to support you during this special and memorable time of life.