Making a difference in dental care

Monday, February 8, 2016
 | 
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

MedicaidA new study compares pediatric dental practices across Medicaid providers and states.

February is National Children's Dental Health Month, and the Benevis Foundation, a nonprofit aiming to improve dental health access and outcomes among underserved pediatric patient populations, has released a report that compares the dental utilization and monthly Medicaid expenditures for patients who received care by a Kool Smiles provider to non-Kool Smiles providers.

Kool Smiles is a client of Benevis, a comprehensive practice services company and parent organization of the Benevis Foundation

Freeman

"The headline is really that Kool Smiles dentists do about 15 percent fewer services overall and charge Medicaid really an astounding 33 percent less than their peers," reports Geoffrey Freeman, co-founder of the Benevis Foundation. "[That] is really groundbreaking, because it implies that if states had Kool Smiles dentists doing all of their Medicaid treatment, they could really save hundreds of millions of dollars annually."

But Freeman goes on to explain that providers like Kool Smiles do not do all the treatments because "the system has really not been set up that way. Obviously, it's a free-market, where anybody can go and participate and become a dentist and serve children however they like." But he submits that well-managed organizations with clinical leaders who "set treatment protocols and really drive … conservativism in the care that they provide to children" -- that really makes a difference.

Presently, there is an initiative by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid to improve access to dental care -- the goal is to do so by about ten percent.

"What we're hoping to do is really put a solution on the table that both states and taxpayers could really embrace to address that need," Freeman explains. "Meaning, 'Hey -- here is an opportunity to actually decrease how much the state is paying for Medicaid services and actually potentially improve the amount of access that's provided at the same time.'"

The Kool Smiles network is about 125 offices in just over a dozen states and the District of Columbia.

Comments

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details

SIGN UP FOR OUR DAILY NEWSBRIEF

SUBSCRIBE

VOTE IN OUR POLL

It appears Democrats view healthcare as the major issue for the 2020 election – do you agree?

CAST YOUR VOTE

GET PUSH NOTIFICATIONS

SUBSCRIBE

LATEST AP HEADLINES

Saudi Arabia: Drone attacks knocked out half its oil supply
Several injured when decks collapse during firefighter event
Trump backs a Netanyahu priority ahead of Israeli election
White House says bin Laden son killed in US operation
In Alaska hometown, Native women say police ignored rapes
Skirmishes break out in Hong Kong mall amid counter rallies

LATEST FROM THE WEB

Pompeo accuses Iran of 'unprecedented attack' after drones hit Saudi oil facilities
Trump, Saudi Crown Prince speak on refinery attack, SPA says
Top Dem senator warns Beto O'Rourke's gun confiscation threat will badly backfire on Democrats
Abortion doctor's family finds remains of more than 2,200 fetuses at his home
Opinion — Joseph diGenova: McCabe prosecution would start holding Obama officials responsible

CARTOON OF THE DAY

Cartoon of the Day
NEXT STORY
John Deere toeing the liberal line?

John DeereIt is one of the best-known American corporations to date, but not everyone thinks John Deere is pro-free enterprise.