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you are > Dental Health Articles > Baltimore health officials worry about parents affording dental care

Baltimore health officials worry about parents affording dental care
Updated: 3/29/2013 9:29:53 PM

Baltimore health officials worry about parents affording dental care

The cost of dental care can be extremely expensive, which is why no one should go without a discount dental plan to help pay for basic oral care needs - particularly a person who has children. While the Affordable Care Act plans to expend dental coverage to children who do not have insurance, the system isn't perfect. For example, a recent article published by the Baltimore Sun pointed out that there are some concerns in the state that new guidance from the Obama administration could unintentionally make it more expensive for some low- and middle-income parents to pay for dental insurance for their children. 

The news source explained that some of the rules could lead to up to $2,000 a year in out-of-pocket costs for some individuals, which may cause them to forgo coverage. 

A serious issue
The Sun explained that the problem of children's dental care is a particularly sore subject in Maryland, since officials have been concerned about kids' teeth ever since a Prince George's County boy died in 2007 from an untreated tooth infection. 

The news source explained that as many as 25 million Americans are expected to purchase dental insurance through exchanges after the ACA is implemented. While the law does set a maximum out-of-pocket cost for health plans, it also allows separate dental plans to be offered in the exchanges. If those plans are offered, then companies selling regular health insurance will not have to offer dental coverage, and people may end up spending up to $1,000 per child and $2,000 for a family in out-of-pocket costs to purchase dental coverage. 

"Most will not take the insurance because they're going to see it as an additional cost," Patricia Bell-McDuffie, D.D.S., the director of oral health services for the Baltimore City Health Department, told the Baltimore Sun. "From a professional point of view, it's a no-brainer to have pediatric dental as part of regular health insurance."

Other options
Families who are concerned about affording dental coverage should look into discount dental plans instead. According to Forbes magazine, these plans can offer people quality dental coverage for a fee of about $100 a year and up to 60 percent off of their dental work. These plans may be a good alternative for people who are not interested in purchasing insurance through an exchange. Regardless of how they do it, people need to understand that they should always acquire coverage so they can visit the dentist regularly. 

© 2013 Brafton Inc.


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