Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Op-Ed: Dental Care Must Be Included As An Essential Benefit For Adults

In an opinion piece in the Washington Post, Dr. Donald L. Chi, a pediatric dentist and associate professor at the University of Washington School of Dentistry, states that in order to help ensure “everyone has a chance at good oral health,” dental care must be “recognized as an essential benefit.” Dr. Chi states that this would involve “including comprehensive dental coverage in Medicaid and the ACA as well as in Medicare (where it is excluded).” Doing so would help undeserved adults receive needed dental care, and although this would require funding, it would “also be an investment” since “fewer emergency room visits would result in cost savings,” writes Dr. Chi. In addition, Dr. Chi says adults with good oral health would experience “less suffering” and would be more apt to find employment “without the fear of appearance-related discrimination.”

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