Access to dental care is unfortunately not for everyone in the US. Access to dental health is still a major issue for many Americans. Although most people are on Medicaid, only some dentists accept that program. The Department of Health & Human Services spent $156 million to 420 health centers across the country to combat the issue.
Dental health is a big problem in the States. Most lower-income citizens, like the homeless, children or seniors, cannot afford to visit the dentist. Dental benefits are not covered by Medicaid for adults, but they’re supposed to cover children in the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
At a national level, forty-two percent of pediatric dentists take part in social programs, according to the American Dental Association. There are variations from state to state. In Florida, for instance, the figure is about thirty percent.For both children and adults, it’s increasingly difficult to get benefits out of the coverage, as dentists say reimbursement rates are low, this leads to trouble getting appointments.
For children, this is a big issue because the lack of dental health could make them not attend school. If untreated, these problems can lead to serious complications. In Connecticut, there are people that are on Medicare, but despite this had not had a dental exam in years. Teeth infections can sometimes spread to other parts of the body if left untreated.
According to several studies, twenty percent of adults on low incomes have teeth in a bad condition. Just twenty percent of adults with Medicaid had a dental visit in the last year, compared to forty-nine percent of those privately ensured.
Adult visits to private dentists fell around 9 percent in six years. They have turned to emergency departments and health centers, which reported a growth of twenty to seventy-four percent. This is why health centers have big trouble in supporting the needs of patients when it comes to the level of dental services.
In June 2016, the Department of Health & Human Services distributed $156 million to 420 health centers across America, to deal with the dental care problem.
To date, approximately 108 million Americans have no insurance or cannot find a health provider who works with their type of coverage.
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