The Coronavirus pandemic has been disruptive to the Research Agenda for 2020, but also presented opportunities for industry collaboration to quickly address the impact on the dental benefits industry through NADP’s Research program. The ability for plans to respond to planned industry surveys was significantly reduced, especially during local government-imposed lockdowns, staff furloughs and the rapid shift to remote work for NADP staff and for member companies. As a reaction to this circumstance, the Research Commission revised the 2020 Industry Research Agenda to accommodate the situation.  Several industry reports have been delayed due to lagging response from members; others were delayed by the Research Commission to accommodate resource limitations of member companies. A new report, Benefit Utilization, was changed to increase frequency of data collection deemed vital to inform NADP’s response to the pandemic, and a series of ad hoc surveys and reports was conducted to assess issues particular to pandemic response.


Statistical Reports on the Industry

State of the Market Report

This industry primer includes highlights from the previous year’s statistical surveys such as trends on enrollment, premiums, customer service and claims processing. The report also has a section on “What to Expect.”


State Fact Sheets

NADP State Fact Sheets provide key, state-specific data on the dental benefits market and highlight pertinent statistics about the national market. State-specific information includes statistics on enrollment and dental workforce, with national data on enrollment trends, change in premium, product funding, offerings by group size and enrollment in dental benefits by household income.


2020 Dental Benefits Report: Network Administrative Metrics and Network Statistics

The NADP Network Administration Report, covers many topics related to Provider Network Metrics. In addition to Network Administration Metrics:

  • This report highlighted the legislative activity around Non-Covered Services, Network Adequacy, Accessibility and Directories and Network Leasing at the state and federal levels.
  • It also reports the number of dentists listed in DHMO and DPPO directories by location (state and Metropolitan Statistical Area) and by dental specialty.

The report includes two files: a report on Network administration Metrics and legislative activity highlights, network statistics and listing of the counts of dentists listed in provider directories; and a spreadsheet that includes the counts of dentists participating on networks.

NADP 2020 Dental Benefits Report: 2019 Claims Metrics

Beginning this year, NADP is no longer partnering with LIMRA to publish this report. The survey and report were redesigned to reflect the nature of dental plan operations more accurately and to provide more meaningful data to dental plans using this report as a benchmark. The survey and report content included data on various claims processing metrics, the prevalence of electronic claim filing and resolution, quality metrics utilization, risk-based benefits, and additional EDI-related topics. 

2020 Dental Benefits Preliminary Report: 2020 Benefit Utilization Trends

Originally planned as an annual survey and report, due to the pandemic, the Research Commission accelerated the data collection timing and frequency of this report. Beginning in the first quarter, data for this report has been collected quarterly and has been issued as a preliminary report to participating plans. The fourth quarter survey and Annual Report will be completed in the first quarter of 2021.

2020 Dental Benefits Report: New Enrollment

NADP’s past partnership with LIMRA to publish a quarterly sales report ended in 2019. This report replaces that one and focuses on enrollment from new business only by product type and by state.

COVID Response Surveys

During May and June, NADP conducted a series of short surveys to address specific issues related to NADP members’ response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Topics included Dental Premium Grace Periods, Provider and Dental Plan Enrollee Support, Business Travel and Remote Workforce and Staffing, and Plan Support for Teledentistry.

Shared Research

Through the Shared Research Program, NADP annually recruits program participants to sponsor research on Employer and Consumer studies. These studies gather information about behaviors and perceptions, and expectations regarding dental benefits. Results of the studies are released to program participants. The Employer Tracking Survey was fielded in the third quarter and the Consumer Tracking Survey is being conducted at this time.

Still to Come in December 2020 and January 2021

NADP 2020 Dental Benefits Report: Enrollment

The NADP Enrollment Report is the cornerstone of NADP’s Statistical Reports on the dental benefits industry. The report should be completed and published by year’s end and will include detailed information on dental plan membership for commercial and public dental benefits at the national and state level.


NADP 2020 Dental Benefits Report: Plan Design

The NADP Plan Design Report includes data reported by product type (DHMO, DPPO In-Network, DPPO Out-of-Network, and Dental Indemnity) and will report benchmark data on Annual Maximum levels, enrollees reaching the Annual Maximum, Lifetime Orthodontia Maximums, Deductible levels, and information about the percentage of enrollment with products with special features like Max Rollover, Implant coverage, TMJ coverage, Preventive and Diagnostic plans, and plans with coverage for cosmetic procedures.

NADP 2020 Financial Operations and Premium Trends Report

This report will benchmark the dollar totals for premium collected, payments to providers, Administrative costs, Commissions paid, taxes paid and profit or loss. All data is collected by group size, non-group and by product type. In addition, this report will include data on average premium by product type and by state.

The report will be issued to participants only for a period of 90 days prior to the report being made available to other parties.

NADP research reports are possible because of the participation of our dental plan members and the concentrated efforts of Research Commission members. This has been a challenging year for all of us; thank you for your continued support of NADP’s Industry Research through your participation. For more information, contact Director of Research Jerry Berggren.

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