A new federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) may not be so good for Americans because it doesn’t do a lot to assist them with the payment for restorative dental care.
This new legislative package is supposed to provide additional dental benefits for children who receive subsidized health coverage. However, the bill doesn’t impose a requirement either on group or individual plans to provide dental benefits for adults.
The package allows small employer groups and uninsured individuals purchase medical insurance from health insurance exchanges, and it permits employees of companies with medical benefits that are especially expensive to purchase exchange coverage.
A possible outcome of this legislation is that the number of US residents that have limited benefit dental coverage may explode. The only reason that midsize and large employers will probably continue to offer dental coverage that is comprehensive is because their employees expect it. Younger employees don’t even understand why their teeth aren’t considered to be part of the body.
There may well be some health insurers who think that offering inexpensive or free preventive dental coverage will set them apart from competitors. However, typical health insurance exchange customers may choose monthly premiums that are lower in cost as opposed to more lucrative benefits.
A new type of dental market might appear that would have offer a package that might look different from the comprehensive dental coverage that is being sold today. As opposed to emphasizing coverage for conditions like tooth decay, this new market may offer financing and discounts for consumers who need cosmetic dental services.
This new legislation will increase the popularity of another way to deal with gaps in dental coverage: Dental tourism.
There are numerous business that are located out of country that have dental offices that do a large amount of restorative work and are trying to hold costs down. However, the reduced cost of obtaining dental care from accredited dental offices that are located out of the country speaks for itself. Some dental insurance experts are even questioning if dental tourism can ever become anything beyond a niche market.