10:05 AM

Charting the Path to a Healthier California

A DentaQuest team is headed west for the California Association of Health Plans’ Annual Conference (October 20–22). A team from California Dental Network, Inc.*, a DentaQuest company, is joining us at Booth 202. This year’s conference theme, “Charting the Path to a Healthier California” embraces how California’s health insurance market is transitioning to a new landscape as a result of the Affordable Care Act. Within this new environment has come a new consumer focus on health insurance, new regulations, the creation of a state-run health insurance exchange, and the expansion of Medicaid benefits.

It is all good news. Despite a bumpy start, healthcare reform is spurring the customer growth that health plans want to see. Today, millions of Californians have insurance cards that grant them access to quality medical care. And, there is opportunity for more growth, through dental and vision benefits.

Analysts at Cigna surveyed 1,847 U.S. residents ages 25 to 64 with an annual household income of at least $25,000 and found 30 percent wished they had dental insurance. The demand clearly exists.

Dental benefits are a highly effective way for insurance plans to grow market share and improve the overall health of their members while managing costs.

We are looking forward to speaking with health plans about the many ways ancillary benefits should be viewed as a strategy for growth. We have a full suite of products for just about every business portfolio – commercial or government, on or off the Marketplace. And, we are also known for our ability to increase existing dental membership, control costs and improve the quality of service for our clients and their members.

Thanks to efforts led by the legislature and supported by the California Dental Association and many other organizations, including some DentaQuest Foundation grantees, California has set itself apart as a national healthcare leader and supporter of oral health. Recently Governor Jerry Brown approved a budget that included preventive and restorative care and full dentures for adult Medicaid recipients, benefits that had been eliminated in 2009.

As several U.S. Surgeon Generals have said, you can’t have good health without good oral health. We are looking forward to opportunities to work together in 2015.

*California Dental Network is a wholly owned subsidiary of DentaQuest, LLC.