Welcome!

News Feed Item

126.7 Million Americans in Need of Dental Care Options

Public Looks to Alternatives, Like Dental Savings Plans, to Get Care Not Covered by the Affordable Care Act

PLANTATION, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 02/10/14 -- As the Affordable Care Act (ACA) discussion switches from accessing the federal and state health exchange web sites, to what care is provided, millions of Americans are finding out that dental care for adults and seniors, and even children in some cases, remains uncovered. According to the National Association of Dental Plans, 126.7 million Americans lack dental coverage nationwide -- nearly three times the number of medically uninsured.

Here is a look at how the ACA may affect your family's access to dental care.

Children. While the ACA defines dental services as an Essential Health Benefit (EHB) for children (up to 19 years), this does not mean that dental care will automatically be a part of a family's insurance plan or that they will be covered. The ACA marketplaces are required to offer pediatric dental plans, but they may be separate from the medical plan and sold as stand-alone policies. It is these stand-alone policies that worry experts and deter consumers from the exchanges. Families who opt not to buy stand-alone dental coverage for their children won't be penalized. And if they do purchase a stand-alone dental plan, it won't be eligible for a federal subsidy, even if they are eligible for help in buying their overall health plan.

Connecticut is one of the few states that offers pediatric dental in all of its health plans. Some states require parents to purchase stand-alone dental plans, like Washington and Nevada. State exchanges in New York and Massachusetts, and most of those run by the federal government, offer a choice of health plans with or without embedded pediatric dental benefits and stand-alone plans. Each state has a lot of leeway in determining what dental services are offered, especially when it comes to setting deductibles, co-payments and co-insurance. That leaves families vulnerable to the possibility of paying thousands of dollars for dental care even though they have insurance. Families should consider their children's potential dental needs and how the costs are applied when evaluating plans in their state.

Adults. Overall, dental coverage for adults is decreasing due to the elimination of adult dental Medicaid benefits in many states. In 2010, 22 states provided no adult Medicaid dental benefits, and since that time additional states have severely curtailed their dental benefits. And as a result of the ACA, the National Association of Dental Plans has estimated that up to 11 million Americans may drop dental coverage when their children are removed from their dental policies.

The ACA does not require adults to be covered for dental services in medical plans. Therefore, adult dental benefits have to be purchased separately, because they are optional under the law. Stand-alone dental plans may be available through the federal health exchange, healthcare.gov, but only with the purchase of medical insurance plans. For example, if you have health insurance through your employer, but not dental insurance, you won't be able to buy just dental coverage on healthcare.gov.

Seniors. As the Baby Boomers retire they will lose employer sponsored insurance and need to pay out-of-pocket for dental care or obtain alternative coverage such as through a Medicare Advantage plan. According to a recent study prepared for the American Dental Association, two-thirds (66 percent) of adults 65 and over have no dental coverage. For the most part, Medicare has never covered comprehensive dental benefits for seniors; the program pays only in certain cases where dental and medical needs intersect. And only two percent of retirees have dental coverage through a prior employer, according to Oral Health America.

When evaluating marketplace plan options, individuals and families should consider the following factors:

  • Identify covered dental or vision services, co-payments and reimbursement percentage levels.
  • Know the deductible that must be met before non-preventive services are covered.
  • Review the network to see whether changes in providers may be needed.
  • Understand whether there is a waiting period that must be met before using the benefits.
  • Know whether there are exclusions or conditions for coverage.
  • Know whether the out-of-pocket maximum applies separately to dental or if the medical out-of-pocket applies.

The goal of health care reform is to extend affordable benefits to Americans who may not have had the opportunity to purchase them in the past. This mainly includes individuals who are self-employed or work for small employers with fewer than 50 employees. This however, does not include most dental and vision benefits sold in stand-alone policies, which account for 98 percent of dental and vision benefits for adults. The ACA really falls short in covering this gap for most Americans when it comes to their dental care.

"We think quality dental care should be accessible and affordable to everyone," says Jennifer Stoll, president of DentalPlans.com. "That's the basic premise of DentalPlans.com, to provide access to quality services in a format that provides information that is easy to understand. Oral and vision care is an essential part of a person's overall health and well-being and lack of coverage can really impact your quality of life. We in fact are already a private exchange for dental savings plans, and have been operating as a marketplace since 1999."

Sweeping changes in dental coverage are driving growth in the discount dental plan market, according to the National Association of Dental Plans (NADP). As the ACA is instituted, approximately 30 to 40 million people will enter the dental benefits market and another 10 to 20 million people will either lose or change their current benefit plans. As a result, more dental patients will pay for their services in cash, making dental savings plans, like those offered by DentalPlans.com, a more popular choice for Americans.

Dental savings plans provide programs that help individuals, families, and groups save on their dental care and other health-related services, with one low annual fee. Similar to a warehouse club, consumers pay an annual fee and get access to significantly reduced rates on dental services, cosmetic dentistry and orthodontia, as well as vision and prescriptions, depending on the plan they choose. Services may include annual cleanings, x-rays, crowns, root canals, and even cosmetic and orthodontic procedures, not typically covered by insurance.

The benefits of a dental savings plan include savings of 10 to 60 percent off what you would pay without a savings plan or insurance, no waiting to use your plan, no claims to file, no limit on how often you can use your plan, and offer an open-enrollment. Even if you already have dental insurance, the dental savings plans may be used along with your dental insurance for even more savings on your dental care once your annual maximums have been met. The savings can be substantial. For example:

Example savings:
Plan: Careington Care 500 Series
Scenario: Two Adults and Two Dependent Children
Annual Family Membership Fee: $189.95

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                            Typical Dentist  Sample            Total Savings
                            Fee              Discounted Fee
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Routine 6 Month Check-up    $63/person       $19/person        $176 for four
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Adult Teeth Cleaning        $122/adult       $39/adult         $166 for two
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Child Teeth Cleaning        $84/child        $31/child         $106 for two
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Four Bitewing X-Rays        $80/person       $26/person        $216 for four
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total Savings                                                  $664*
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Using the Careington Care 500 Series plan, which costs a low annual fee of $189.95, a family of four could save $626 just on their annual ADA recommended treatments alone. That's $436 in savings, when including the cost of the plan. And the savings can really add up when considering additional dental care that may be needed for you and your family, like sealants for children's teeth, crowns, braces, and more.

DentalPlans.com has been providing dental savings plans since 1999. The company offers an extensive selection of comprehensive dental savings plans from the nation's most trusted networks, like Aetna and Careington, and more than 100,000 dentists to choose from nationwide. Participating dental specialists include orthodontists, oral surgeons, periodontists, endodontists, pediatric dentists, and general dentists. DentalPlans.com also offers discount plans for vision, hearing, chiropractic, and pharmaceutical services.

About DentalPlans.com
DentalPlans.com has successfully been operating as a private exchange since 1999, as the leading retailer of dental savings plans. Similar to a membership at a warehouse club, consumers pay an annual fee and get access to reduced rates on dental services and cosmetic dentistry and orthodontia, as well as vision and pharmacy. Members can choose from more than 30 different plans from trusted healthcare brands, like Aetna, Careington, Signature Wellness, and UNI-CARE, and have access to more than 140,000 dentists in combined networks nationwide. DentalPlans.com has affordable plans to fit any need and budget. And, depending on the plan you choose, consumers save 10 to 60 percent off services. Visitors of DentalPlans.com can compare plans by ZIP code or procedure, view sample savings and find a nearby dentist. DentalPlans.com is committed to making you smile, by making access to quality oral healthcare affordable and available to everyone nationwide. It's one of the reasons the company has been on the Inc. 5000 list, 3 years standing. To connect with DentalPlans.com visit us at www.dentalplans.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dentalplans.

*Individual plans vary.

*Regular cost is based on the national average of the 80th percentile usual and customary rates as detailed in the 2013 FairHealth Report in the Los Angeles, Orlando, Chicago and New York City metropolitan statistical areas.

*These fees represent the average of the assigned Careington Care 500 Series fees in the Los Angeles, Orlando, Chicago and New York City metropolitan statistical areas.

Prices subject to change.

Add to Digg Bookmark with del.icio.us Add to Newsvine

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devic...
"The Striim platform is a full end-to-end streaming integration and analytics platform that is middleware that covers a lot of different use cases," explained Steve Wilkes, Founder and CTO at Striim, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"With Digital Experience Monitoring what used to be a simple visit to a web page has exploded into app on phones, data from social media feeds, competitive benchmarking - these are all components that are only available because of some type of digital asset," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Me...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DXWorldExpo has been named “Global Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation is the key issue driving the global enterprise IT business. Digital Transformation is most prominent among Global 2000 enterprises and government institutions.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Datera, that offers a radically new data management architecture, has been named "Exhibitor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Datera is transforming the traditional datacenter model through modern cloud simplicity. The technology industry is at another major inflection point. The rise of mobile, the Internet of Things, data storage and Big...
Kubernetes is an open source system for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Kubernetes was originally built by Google, leveraging years of experience with managing container workloads, and is now a Cloud Native Compute Foundation (CNCF) project. Kubernetes has been widely adopted by the community, supported on all major public and private cloud providers, and is gaining rapid adoption in enterprises. However, Kubernetes may seem intimidating and complex ...
"Outscale was founded in 2010, is based in France, is a strategic partner to Dassault Systémes and has done quite a bit of work with divisions of Dassault," explained Jackie Funk, Digital Marketing exec at Outscale, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We focus on SAP workloads because they are among the most powerful but somewhat challenging workloads out there to take into public cloud," explained Swen Conrad, CEO of Ocean9, Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"I think DevOps is now a rambunctious teenager – it’s starting to get a mind of its own, wanting to get its own things but it still needs some adult supervision," explained Thomas Hooker, VP of marketing at CollabNet, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We are still a relatively small software house and we are focusing on certain industries like FinTech, med tech, energy and utilities. We help our customers with their digital transformation," noted Piotr Stawinski, Founder and CEO of EARP Integration, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We've been engaging with a lot of customers including Panasonic, we've been involved with Cisco and now we're working with the U.S. government - the Department of Homeland Security," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We're here to tell the world about our cloud-scale infrastructure that we have at Juniper combined with the world-class security that we put into the cloud," explained Lisa Guess, VP of Systems Engineering at Juniper Networks, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Your homes and cars can be automated and self-serviced. Why can't your storage? From simply asking questions to analyze and troubleshoot your infrastructure, to provisioning storage with snapshots, recovery and replication, your wildest sci-fi dream has come true. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, provided a ChatOps demo where you can talk to your storage and manage it from anywhere, through Slack and similar services with...
As enterprise cloud becomes the norm, businesses and government programs must address compounded regulatory compliance related to data privacy and information protection. The most recent, Controlled Unclassified Information and the EU’s GDPR have board level implications and companies still struggle with demonstrating due diligence. Developers and DevOps leaders, as part of the pre-planning process and the associated supply chain, could benefit from updating their code libraries and design by in...