Oral health advocates are applauding a recently proposed federal rule they say would remove a significant financial barrier many parents face when shopping for affordable dental benefits for their children on health insurance marketplaces.
A rule change filed last month by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) would adjust how premium tax credits are calculated to better ensure the credits can apply to stand-alone pediatric dental coverage purchased on exchanges. Continue reading
Last year about this time, we were reading about Covered California’s decision to require parents seeking pediatric dental coverage on the state’s new insurance exchange to buy separate stand-alone plans for their children.
Pediatric dental coverage was designated as one of 10 essential benefits under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). But most dental insurance is sold separately from other kinds of health insurance, and some people supported the idea of selling pediatric dental benefits separately on the state exchange. They contended that consumers who did not want or need pediatric dental benefits should not be required to buy them.
At the same time, Covered California’s plan to offer pediatric dental coverage through stand-alone plans came as a disappointment to oral health advocates. They argued that embedding dental benefits into the health care plans for sale on the state exchange would help expand children’s access to dental care and lower the costs of the benefits by distributing the burden of paying for them across a broader group of people.