Here's the drill on choosing
dental insurance in Westminster
Small Business Savvy
Fixing your dental problems can be a painful experience. But choosing a
dental plan for your company or yourself should not be. There are five parts of
every dental plan that you need to compare in order to make a fair
evaluation, especially when choosing dental insurance in Westminster.
Most importantly, take a look at the services that are covered. While
one plan may cover orthodontia, another plan may not provide coverage
for it at all. Similarly, while one plan may offer coverage of 80
percent of preventative care costs, another may cover the full amount.
Carefully examining the list of coverage exclusions and limitations
can help ensure that you and/or your employees do not run into any surprises when
it comes to submitting claims.
Do not be fooled by percentages. While a company selling dental insurance in Westminster may indicate
that it will cover a set percentage of your costs, you and/or your
employee may have to pay substantially more than the remaining
This is because a UCR
program, which is one of the most common dental plan structures, provides
reimbursement for a treatment based on either the actual incurred dental
charges or the "usual, customary and reasonable" costs that the
determines are typical.
The dental plan will then provide reimbursement based on the lower, less
To assess how reasonable a dental plan's limits are, it can be
useful to compare the UCR allowances across plans for a set of routine
treatments such as a cleaning, a filling, a set of X-rays or a root
dental insurance in Westminster can also differ in terms of which dentists they are willing to
reimburse. While you can always go to any dentist that you would like,
you may not always get reimbursed for your treatments equally. Dental plans can
either choose to accept all dentists or be more restrictive and limit
reimbursement to certain dentists only. If your company is small enough,
it can be a wise move to check the list of participating dentists for a
given plan before agreeing to sign up.
Also, do not overlook the administrative requirements for maintaining
the dental plan. Find out what flexibility you have in adding or terminating
employees. Some dental plans are very restrictive and require the company to
notify the plan immediately about any changes it would like to make. If
this window is missed, you risk having an employee who cannot obtain
coverage until the next open enrollment.
Alternatively, you may potentially waste money by having to pay for
coverage for an employee who no longer works with your company if you do
not report the termination in a timely fashion.
How much does
dental insurance in Westminster cost? Dental plan insurance rates can range from
$5 to $100 a month, depending on whether you see the coverage as an
individual or for a family and according to how generous the coverage
is. (Rates will also be lower if your company has 50 or more employees so
you can qualify for group discounts.) For a free quote for dental
insurance, go to
www.DentalPlans.com. While the temptation may be great, avoid making a decision based on
cost alone. With the right plan in place, you and/or your employees
can keep smiling.
Mie-Yun Lee is editorial director of BuyerZone (www.buyerzone.com),
a virtual purchasing adviser for small businesses, and author of "The
Essential Business Buyer's Guide." Call 800-938-0088 for more information.
Insurance Plans and Descriptions
Open Panel (Indemnity dental plan)
allows choice of dental office
insurance company & you each pay percentage of fees
dentist reimbursed based on fee schedule
wide variety of plans available
Managed Care dental plan (HMO)
prepaid plan with specific network of dental offices
treatment overseen by HMO
dentist reimbursed less than usual & customary fees
co-payment often required
Managed Care dental plan (PPO)
choice of either dental offices within or outside
more treatment options
dentist reimbursed based on negotiated fee schedule
co-payment often required
Insurance dental plan (Direct Reimbursement)
allows choice of dental office
employer directly reimburses you a predetermined amount
simple and easy to use
you & dentist play active role in your treatment and
your choice for dental insurance in Westminster
When you choose dental insurance in Westminster, you're also choosing a type or
category of plan with its approach to the provision of benefits and payment for
dental care services. For example, the indemnity plan allows you to chose any
dentist, while the pre-selected dentist plan requires you to select and always
use the same contracted dentist. Call the carrier's member services if you have
a specific question.
When comparing plans, check premiums and benefits to predict your possible
costs for the balance of the plan year. You only pay deductibles if you
use benefits through the dental plan, and co-pays (Indemnity
only) and out-of-pocket expenses.
Once enrolled, review all the materials that are sent to you so that you
understand the terms and conditions before using the dental plan services. Should you have any
issues at any time throughout the year, contact your carrier's member services
department. They are there to serve you.
Considerations for enrolling in an Indemnity Dental Plan
An Indemnity plan pays established benefits when you seek covered services
from any licensed dental provider, not just from among those in a contracted
status with the carrier.
There is an annual deductible, then the plan will pay a percentage of covered
charges; and you'll pay the balance. If the provider bills more than the plan
allows, you will be responsible for any charge over the plan's allowed amount
for each procedure code.
We have an additional benefit with our indemnity dental plans. It includes the
benefit that you will not be charged a higher amount than that which the carrier
says is usual, customary and reasonable, provided you use one of their
contracted, preferred providers (PPO). Benefits will be paid at 80% or 50% of
usual, customary and reasonable charges, subject to the yearly or lifetime limit
depending upon each procedure.
These plans require you to select a dentist from a list of contracted
dentists. You must always use that dentist for your entire dental needs. You may
change your primary dentist during the plan year, by selecting another dentist
from the list and then notifying the dental plan's member services office. If
your selected dentist determines that you need to see a specialist, then the
services required will be covered as specified in the plan booklet.
The plan booklet lists your out-of-pocket expenses for any required procedure.
The charges are reduced fees. That is, a reduction in what would other wise be
The majority of dentists who contract with these plans require that you be on
their patient roster, before a appointment can be scheduled. The plans update
rosters on a monthly basis. However, if you are new to a plan, or change
dentists, and not on your selected dentist's roster, and have a dental
emergency, you can call the plan's member services office for referral to a
Dental insurance is designed
as a financial assistance for your dental needs. Insurance should not determine
your dental care and treatment. For example, you may require 3-4 cleans per year
to control tooth decay or gum disease. Insurance may pay for only two
appointments. You will need to contribute financially to maintain optimum oral
health. Be informed.
Dental Insurance Selection and Use
Can you choose your dental office or must you choose from
a list? Are you allowed to see specialists and how many are available on your
plan? How many providers in your area? Are there co-payments for many services?
Ask and Compare.
Remember - insurance coverage is just a partial assistance
toward good oral health.
Know your benefits - read your policy and compare.
Know your options - limitations and
exclusions of your dental plan.
Practice good oral hygiene- follow the advice of your registered dental
hygienist and dentist.
Provide feedback- let others know of your experiences.
Ask questions- be interested and involved in your own health. Ask for
option alternatives at your insurance renewal.
Maintain Good Oral Health
Most dental plans provide coverage for selected diagnostic
services, preventive care and emergency treatment. These services are basic for
maintaining good oral health. However, depending on your dental plan, the extent or
frequency of the services covered may be limited.
You may be required to pay the dentist directly for a
portion of the basic care, depending upon your individual oral health needs.
Good dental health is worth the investment.
Every dental care plan is different. Familiarize yourself
of the benefits of your dental plan to maximize your coverage. During the
negotiation and/or renewal of your coverage, ask about different options and
alternatives for your insurance package.
Remember - the registered dental hygienist is an important
part of your dental visit.
how do you find the best dental insurance in Westminster?
Dentalplans.com offers high quality dental coverage for you and
your family for as little as $99/year. They feature 13 great dental
networks nationwide. Plus, when you join, you get 3 months of
additional coverage for free!
When you join, your family can choose from over 100,000 combined
dentist listings across America and instantly save up to 60% off the
regular prices for your dental work. And specialty work, like braces and
gum surgery, is covered 20-25% off instantly as well.
Thousands of satisfied customers are already taking advantage of their
great dental plans.
If you join the new UNI-CARE 200 dental plan, you get free bonus benefits
that entitle you to
excellent discounts on vision care, prescription drugs, chiropractic
treatment, and hearing devices
at many stores across the country. This is about a $50 value, just for
joining! They have a great dental search which lets you compare the
savings each plan offers. Then, you can enroll right online and download
your benefit package immediately.
Get the dental coverage you deserve.