Why Millennials Need Preventive Healthcare

Reviewed by Dr. Jonathan Bonnet, MD, MPH


There’s a reason why the millennial generation has garnered fascination in recent years: the over 73 million millennials currently living in the U.S. continue to represent the emerging paradoxes of their time.


Better educated than previous generations, many millennials are also significantly in debt, with only 38% able to make major purchases like paying for a car, essential appliance, or furniture.


And though this generation generally considers themselves to be in good health, in reality, one-third have health conditions that reduce their quality of life and life expectancy, making them less healthy than members of Generation X were at the same age.


But that doesn’t mean that health and wellness isn’t a top priority for this demographic. For many millennials, wellness is a daily, active pursuit. Yet obstacles remain when it comes to accessing convenient and reliable preventive health care.


Here, we discuss the specific health care needs of this generation and why Forfend is uniquely positioned to offer optimized, data-driven preventive care designed for the modern millennial.


Why don’t millennials have strong relationships with primary care providers?


Simply put: Many millennials don’t see primary care doctors because of financial barriers. But even when they do manage to schedule an appointment, the experience isn’t necessarily positive:



  • 50% of millennials do not have a strong relationship with a primary care physician.

  • 86% of millennials leave doctor’s visits feeling negatively about the experience, whether due to confusion or not feeling comfortable with their provider.

  • 31% leave their appointments without getting clear answers to their questions.

  • 19% feel even more confused about their health at the end of their appointments than they did before meeting with their primary care provider.

  • 30% of millennials report feeling overwhelmed when it comes to their health and not knowing where to start when taking actionable steps to improve their wellbeing.


In general, millennials also report that they often skip annual wellness checks because they feel healthy, are too busy, or find scheduling doctor’s appointments to be inconvenient.


Why do millennials need preventive care?


Data shows that millennial health starts declining at 27 years of age, when nearly 50% are unlikely to have a strong relationship with a primary care provider.


Specifically, adverse health in millennials is largely driven by cardiovascular disease and endocrine conditions (like diabetes) —conditions which can often be prevented or offset with lifestyle changes and a preventive approach to health care.


Heart disease is a prime example of the vital but underappreciated role prevention plays to our personal health and in the healthcare system. Doctors are now realizing that atherosclerosis begins much sooner than previously thought, underscoring the need for intensive efforts at coronary disease prevention in young adults.


What’s more, guidelines for diabetes screenings have also recently changed: Experts now recommend screening as early as age 35 for adults with overweight and obesity (which could account for roughly 40% of this demographic).


If left untreated, heart disease and other adverse outcomes in millennials are projected to add 30% or more to the already 1.1 trillion dollars spent to manage chronic conditions nationally.


But preventive care can help break this cycle. The earlier the intervention, the more likely we are to avert various health problems that with time can become significant and debilitating for this generation.


How Forfend can help


Forfend is flipping the script on preventive care. Our results and data-driven approach to disease prevention and healthspan optimization is designed for the modern patient and offers maximum prevention in minimal time—without cutting corners.


By combining the power of bloodwork, the expertise of world class doctors, and the convenience of telehealth, our approachable yet highly sophisticated model optimizes the health and longevity of the individual while reducing out-of-pocket costs and strain on the healthcare system.


Here’s how it works:



  • The initial Forfend experience takes about one week from start to finish.

  • After filling out an intake form via Forfend’s HIPAA-secure online portal to determine current health status and health history, the patient receives a prescription for personalized labs to establish a baseline—which can be administered at home or at a local lab.

  • Once lab results are in, the patient spends 30-minutes 1:1 with a Forfend doctor or nurse practitioner (NP) to create a plan informed by health data and in context with lifestyle to increase the likelihood that the guidance is actually followed in real life.

  • The first appointment with the doctor is virtual, informed by data from bloodwork and other key vitals, and conducted within Forfend’s secure telehealth platform.


We also offer additional conveniences to improve the overall care experience in the long run:



  • We accept insurance to help patients navigate care along the way.

  • We connect patients to doctors, data and insights from the comfort of their home.

  • Easy-to-understand personal health data is kept easily accessible all in one place.

  • Continued programming options and care navigation support are available, from dietitians to sports medicine experts to disease specialists.

  • A clear and transparent pricing structure without membership fees.

  • Extended hours and easy booking.


Forfend was founded by leading doctors and health experts who, having seen tens of thousands of people with chronic health conditions that could have been prevented, sought to design a new kind of wellness exam.


Our approach is rooted in the latest science, driven by data, and shortens the bench to bedside delay while keeping the integral relationship between physician and patient intact.


Our primary goal is to help patients live healthier, longer lives by taking the guesswork out of prevention. Guided by personalized data, science-backed insights and 1:1 doctor-led guidance, Forfend helps identify early risk factors and make practical, actionable lifestyle changes that matter.


Sources


Blue Cross Blue Shield Association Study Finds Millennials are Less Healthy than Generation X Were at the Same Age. (2019).


Five Ways Millennials Do Health Care Their Own Way. (2019).


High Prevalence of Coronary Atherosclerosis in Asymptomatic Teenagers and Young Adults, Evidence From Intravascular Ultrasound. (2001).


How Millennials Want to Work and Live. (n.d.).


Millennials. (2021).


Millennial life: How young adulthood today compares with prior generations. (2019).


On the Cusp of Adulthood and Facing an Uncertain Future: What We Know About Gen Z So Far. (2020).


Prediabetes and Type 2 Diabetes: Screening. (2021).


Prevalence of Obesity and Severe Obesity Among Adults: United States, 2017–2018. (2020).


State of the Connected Patient. (2017).


Study Shows Pandemic Has Made U.S. Millennials “More Stressed Out Than Ever Before.” (2021).


The Health of Millennials. (2019).

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