With the rising costs of health and dental insurance, many employers and individuals have been forced to cut costs wherever possible. In many cases, this has increased the popularity of managed-care type insurance options – including “Preferred Provider” plans. While the cost-cutting aim underlying these plans is laudable, there are important issues to consider if you are choosing a dentist solely on the recommendation of your insurance provider.
First, because limits are set, the managed dental care provider may propose a treatment that is less expensive upfront but may result in the need for more treatment later. The alternative of using optimal techniques and materials from the start can actually save you money over time, since the treatments are in many cases based on more state-of-art technologies, and will be longer-lasting. Moreover, modern preventive methods, though many are not supported by managed care, can eliminate the need for some procedures altogether.
A related consideration is that many clinics not subscribing to managed care offer extra services at no extra charge. These may include advanced procedures that prevent pain, save time, and enhance comfort, as well as promote the general health of the patient and the community. (E.g., the use of modern sterilization, water purification, and environmentally friendly, bio-compatible materials.)
Second, though they may not be listed in your managed care literature, many dentists (including our office) can still bill your insurance provider for a portion of your treatment. As noted above, you may feel that the extra value and peace of mind derived from seeing the dentist of your choice may be well worth the additional out-of-pocket expense you will be asked to pay.
If you have any questions regarding your insurance plan, don’t hesitate to call us and speak with one of our knowledgeable financial coordinators.