ACA’s Exchanges Offer Opportunity to Improve Dental Health

As the Affordable Care Act’s Exchanges begin to enroll people across the country, a seemingly minor provision in the law is bound to make a big difference in combating the most widespread disease children experience today: tooth decay.Federal legislators wanted to tackle this issue head-on, and saw fit to make children’s dental coverage one of the ten essential health benefits for people getting coverage on the Exchanges.

There are many options for new customers purchasing dental benefits for their kids on the Exchanges. Consumers will now be able to choose from stand-alone dental plans, which is the way dental benefits have traditionally been provided, and from health plans with dental coverage wrapped up inside.

In fact, besides health plans covering major medical benefits, stand-alone dental plans are the only other type of coverage that can be sold on the Affordable Care Act’s Exchanges. Our goal is to help parents get access to great coverage so they can get their kids to the dentist for the care they need. Delta Dental member companies are offering children’s plans in most of states across the country in 2014, with more offering coverage in their states in 2015.

Parents will be able to shop for dental coverage not only for their children, but also for themselves. Family plans can be sold on most Exchanges as long as the pediatric coverage is also included in the plan. Recent studies show that parents with dental plans go to the dentist.2 And when they do, they are likely to bring their children. Ultimately, we hope that Delta Dental and other carriers can do their part to reduce dental disease across the country.

1 Oral Health in America; A Report of the Surgeon General (Executive Summary). National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. http://www.nidcr.nih.gov/datastatistics/surgeongeneral/report/executivesummary.htm 

2007 NADP Consumer Survey. National Association of Dental Plans. http://www.ineeddentalbenefits.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/nadpemployerwhitepaper.pdf

7 thoughts on “ACA’s Exchanges Offer Opportunity to Improve Dental Health

  1. ACA Exchange is a great program that will help improve dental health especially for children whose parents regularly go to dentist. Hope the program gets more exposure so people can learn more about dental care options. Thanks for the informative post.

  2. Dental insurance is one thing many people don’t realize doesn’t always come wrapped up with their regular insurance. Now patients have a much better chance of getting the insurance they need to get the care they deserve for their families.

  3. I believe that dental insurance is one that most people do avoid because they don’t like to go to the dentist. But I think with ACA Exchange people will start seeing things differently with dental insurance.

  4. Maybe with the ability to do individual or bundled dental and health plans, more people will opt for dental, unless it is required to be had like health insurance will be. As a dentist, I think that would be great!

  5. Some of my patients have been trying to access the ACA website but they haven’t found a way to sign up yet. I know this will be very helpful to a lot of folks once the site is up and running. I hope people take advantage of their dental insurance and use preventive care to avoid expensive procedures. Thank you for spreading the word.

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