In Maine, some dentists are fighting the cuts in kids’ dental insurance plans. Maine insurance companies will no longer cover the recommended two fluoride treatments a year, and instead cover just one.
About a year or so ago, some dentists in Maine started noticing that insurance plans were cutting back on preventive coverage for kids. Instead of paying for the two fluoride treatments a year recommended for most children by dental associations, many insurers would only cover one. This has dentists like Whitney Wignall riled up–and taking the fight to restore coverage for fluoride treatments to the State House.
First, she just has to finish painting fluoride varnish on 6-year-old Moria Concannon’s teeth. “All right, I’m going to dry it off with a little bit of air first, OK? And just stay open for me,” she says.
Wignall works at Southern Maine Pediatric Dentistry in South Portland. Concannon’s mother is willing to pay the extra money for her daughter to have more than the one treatment their insurance will cover. But Wignall says that’s often not the case.
“A lot of parents decline having it done, and they say, my insurance doesn’t cover it, I only want it once a year,” she says. “They feel like, well the insurance company knows what’s actually necessary, you’re trying to do something extra.”
This week, legislators will take up a bill that would require insurers to pay for two fluoride treatments per child annually, and up to four treatments for children with… continue reading
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