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State cuts threaten dental care for those in between
Updated: 11/2/2009 2:59:51 PM

State cuts threaten dental care for those in between In Massachusetts, people who make too much to receive MassHealth, but too little to be able to afford dental care procedures that cost in the thousands of dollars have options, but they could soon disappear.

MassHealth helps low-income individuals receive dental care, but some people make too much money to take advantage of the program, according to the Cape Cod Times. However, pricey dental care procedures like tooth capping are outside of the financial means of people like Barbara Howard.

Howard lives on social security, so when her dentist told her she would have to pay $1,200 to have a tooth capped, she got nervous. Fortunately, she found the Cape Cod Dentist Program, which is a low-cost initiative that allowed her to get the procedure for $360, says the news source. But Massachusetts cut its funding of the program on June 30, and money is running out fast.

"There's just a huge gap for people who don't qualify for MassHealth but still could not afford the regular cost of dental care," said Kristen Carboni to the Times. Carboni is the coordinator of the Community Coalition of Cape Cod.

Access to care has been an issue in the U.S. for quite some time. In September 2009, the New York Times published an article that claimed more than 100 million Americans are without dental coverage.

The Mayo Clinic says that cavities are the product of poor dental hygiene and that they can be avoided by brushing twice a day and flossing regularly. Seeing the dentist is also important.

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