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Insurance… It Is A Changin’

Jan 28, 2014

By Felicia Papier

Arnold Bennett once said, “Any change, even a change for the better, is accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts.”  We have certainly seen the aches and pains of our nation’s health care reform system over the past few years, but what hurts most is the public’s misunderstanding of insurance terminology used within reform. 

In a recent article from The Atlantic, author Sofia Garcia shares that more than 77 million people have trouble with common health-related reading tasks.  That is 35% of the population.  Since we have more and more people enrolling on a daily basis into federal and state-based marketplaces for their insurance needs, this staggering statistic could lead to major problems in their general understanding of how their insurance works. 

What can be more confusing and even downright frustrating is where your dental health fits into all of this.  Many health care carriers on the exchanges are offering dental benefits with their regular health care plans; however, many are not, including Americans who receive Medicare benefits.  There are opportunities for these folks to buy stand alone dental plans on the exchange, but the cost would far outweigh the benefits.  On the other end of the spectrum, children MUST BE covered by a dental plan under the ACA reform, but again it’s a slippery slope of knowing what it all really means. 

Have a headache yet?

So with all of this said, as much as we would like to, we know that we cannot explain EVERYTHING about insurance on our blogs. But we can help with your dental health literacy.  For the past several weeks, Dental Insurance Store has broken down the language of dental insurance to the best of our ability!  We have talked about copays and coinsurance. How about effective dates and waiting periods?  Those can be tricky to navigate.  And last but not least, we chatted about dental deductibles. 

Here are some of the really important terms we have discussed over the past few weeks:

  • Annual deductible: the fixed amount you must spend out-of-pocket before your insurance plan benefits begin
  • Lifetime deductible: similar to the annual deductible except it’s only paid once in the lifetime of the plan as long as uninterrupted coverage is maintained
  • Effective date: the date you are officially covered by your dental plan
  • Waiting period: the period of time which the insurance company will not pay for certain major procedures even after your effective date has started
  • Copay or copayment: the fixed amount or flat-fee for a dental procedure or office visit
  • Coinsurance: a cost-sharing platform between you and your dental plan and the amount of coinsurance required usually varies by the type of service received

All of these things can be completely overwhelming when choosing a dental insurance plan which is why we are here to help!  Did you know on the Dental Insurance Store site you can find the answer to almost any question you may have about buying a great dental plan?  It’s true!  And if you cannot find the answer, just pick up the phone and speak to one of our licensed agents.  They will walk you through everything you need to know and can even save you time by enrolling you into the right plan for your needs.

Being unsure of what your dental plan covers and how it works is no laughing matter.  But one of our goals at DIS is to make sure that you know what you have and that it’s something to smile about!

Sources: The Atlantic, New York Times, Warrior Fitness

Copyright 2014, Bloom Insurance Agency, LLC©

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