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Dental Plans Meet with Members of Congress to Encourage Consumer Access and Incentives to Dental Benefits

by Lauren Oakley | Apr 06, 2017
NADP Members urge Congressional Leaders to Support Tax Incentives for Employer-Sponsored Dental Benefits, Expand Consumer Coverage Options and Preserve Oral Health Programs in Medicaid.

Washington, D.C. – National Association of Dental Plans (NADP) members will urge Congressional leaders to improve consumers’ dental benefit options through continued tax incentives on employer-sponsored plans and expanded options for pediatric dental coverage in the small group and individual market during its 2017 industry fly-in, “NADP Advocacy in Action,” April 5-6, in the nation’s Capital.

“Serving as the voice of the dental benefits industry is one of the primary purposes of NADP,” said Board Chair Theresa McConeghey of Principal. “Our members are to be commended for their participation in the democratic process and their representation of our industry.”

In face-to-face meetings with Members of Congress, NADP members will seek continued bi-partisan support for the tax exclusion for employer-sponsored health plans and other incentives that include dental coverage. Members will stress the value of dental coverage, noting it is the most requested employee benefit after medical benefits with pharmacy coverage. They will also demonstrate how dental coverage provides access to care needed for both adults and children. Dental treatment lowers overall health care costs including costs related to more complex dental care procedures, visits to the emergency room and treatment for expensive, chronic medical conditions.

NADP members will also express concern regarding the impact of reduced state Medicaid funding for oral health treatments as most recently proposed by the American Health Care Act (AHCA). The legislation would have restructured Medicaid financing to a per capita cap program based on several categories of enrollees, which would reduce Federal dollars going to States for Medicaid. To address the funding shortfall, states would restrict eligibility requirements, reduce payment rates or eliminate optional services such as dental care.

Finally, members will provide information on choices for dental benefits in public insurance Marketplaces where individuals and families are allowed to purchase stand alone or embedded dental coverage. NADP members will highlight how 1.9 million people selected separate dental plans through the Marketplaces for plan year 2017. NADP members will also encourage independent purchase of dental benefits in the Marketplaces for 2018 and beyond which will provide all consumers expanded choices of dental benefits.

Advocacy in Action attendees will provide detailed documentation of the issues at the conclusion of their face-to-face meetings, and NADP will follow-up with policymakers throughout the year. These materials are also available on NADP’s website at www.nadp.org.