Got dental insurance? Then you best make the most of it now, because you may not have it later.
According to the :DP™ SmileMeter, a national survey on American dental health issues, six out of ten people currently receive dental benefits as part of their employer-sponsored health plans.
But by 2025 almost all major employers will not be funding health insurance plans and fewer than 20 percent of people working in the private sector will receive healthcare coverage through an employer, according to “Reinventing American Healthcare,” a book by Ezekiel J. Emanuel, director of the Clinical Bioethics Department at the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
So what do you do when your dental insurance is gone? Our health insurance system will almost certainly change over the next ten years, but since dental care coverage has long been sold as a standalone plan, chances are it won’t be rolled into primary health insurance plans any time soon.
If you’ve already lost your dental insurance due to your employer switching to the federal or state run exchanges you know what a hassle getting dental coverage can be. Dental care is rarely included in healthcare exchange plans for adults, and if purchased as a stand-alone plan dental insurance is not eligible for federal subsidy tax credits.
If your dental coverage has been dumped, there are other options that can help you obtain the care you need. Here are some tips from :DentalPlans for finding affordable dental care in your community:
Explore Obamacare: Open enrolment for 2015 began on Nov. 15 and ends Feb 15. If you have questions about obtaining dental insurance from the federal or state insurance exchanges, visit :DentalPlans’ Affordable Care Act Information Resource Site at www.dentalplans.com/affordable-care-act/.
Shop Around: Contact your state’s dental association (you can find contact information via the website of the American Dental Association) and ask if there are local dentists who offer sliding scale rates, or discounts for emergency services/kids/senior care. Also check for dental services at federally-funded community health centers near you by calling1–888–Ask–HRSA (1–888–275–4772) or visiting the Health Resources and Services Administration site.
Go Back To School: Dental schools often provide quality treatment at reduced cost. Experienced dentists closely supervise the students who will be working on you. Dental hygiene schools may offer low-cost preventive dental care as well. For contact information on dental schools in your area, visit the DDS/DMD programs page on the American Dental Association website. For preventative care, visit the American Dental Hygienists’ Association.
Compare and Contrast: If concerns about insurance costs are causing you to avoid seeing a dentist, a dental savings plan from :DentalPlans can help. A dental savings plan offers an affordable alternative to dental insurance with no waiting, paperwork, restrictions on pre-existing conditions or other hassles. If you’re interested in a dental savings plan that includes hearing care, call one of our :DP AtYourService Customer Care Representatives at 1-800-238-5163.