PLANTATION, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today is the first day of Medicare open enrollment for 2020 coverage. People looking for a plan or considering switching plans have until December 7 to make their selections, however big changes to the Plan Finder Tool and plan offerings can bring confusion.
DentalPlans.com, a leading online marketplace for dental and health savings plans in the U.S., put together the following resource for seniors so they can make educated decisions to ensure all aspects of their health are taken care of, including oral health. Here’s what you need to know.
There Are New Plans And Lower Premiums
According to the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), nearly 600 Medicare Advantage plans have been added in 2019. Average premiums have declined to their lowest levels in 6 years. Over the past three years, average Part D basic premiums have decreased by 13.5 percent, from $34.70 in 2017 to a projected $30 in 2020, saving beneficiaries about $1.9 billion in premium costs.
The Plan Finder Tool Has Changed
Taking the time to compare Part D drug plans – and Medicare Advantage Plans – is an important way to manage health costs. The CMS has just replaced its decade-old Medicare Plan Finder with a brand-new Medicare Plan Finder.
The new Plan Finder Tool currently requires people to do a little more math than the old tool, and currently offers fewer sorting features. It’s also a little harder than it used to be to view the lowest-cost plans, restrictions and pharmacy pricing information. These issues are expected to be addressed soon.
Medicare Is Not Dental Care
Despite many changes, basic Medicare still does not cover dental care, except in extremely rare instances and only when dental care is an integral part of treatment for a covered healthcare procedure.
Medicare Advantage Plans Come With Limits
Medicare Advantage plans are the only way to get coverage for dental care under Medicare. These plans are administered by private companies who contract with the Federal Government.
While Medicare Advantage offers dental coverage, it is important to remember original Medicare continues to offer wider access to health care professionals, letting beneficiaries visit any doctor, specialist, hospital or urgent care center that accepts Medicare, nationwide.
Medicare Advantage plan members, on the other hand, must see doctors within the plan’s network. This may leave people feeling that they must choose between unrestricted access to doctors they choose with a Medicare Plan, or having dental care benefits under a Medicare Advantage plan.
Dental Care Options for Medicare Recipients
Seniors who prefer an original Medicare plan can opt to join a dental savings plan – an affordable alternative to traditional dental insurance – to save on their dental bills, while also having access to a wider range of care with their Medicare plan.
Plan members can save 10-60% on their dental care at over 100,000 participating dentists and dental specialists nationwide. This includes savings on routine care, as well as expensive procedures that many seniors need in order to maintain a healthy smile as they age, including crowns, root canals, partial or full dentures, dental implants or replacing missing teeth.
“It’s unfortunate that people often lose their employer-provided dental coverage right when their dental care costs are beginning to rise,” said Jenn Stoll, Chief Commercial Officer at DentalPlans.com. “But there are so many affordable dental savings plans to choose from, it’s easy to find one that fits every dental care need and budget.”
The plans available on DentalPlans.com range from $79.95-$199.95 annually for an individual and include offerings from well-known providers such as Aetna, Careington and Cigna. Family plans are also available. And while insurance has waiting periods, pre-existing conditions, annual maximums and deductibles, dental savings plans do not. Find out more about dental savings plans on DentalPlans.com.
DentalPlans.com, founded in 1999, is a leading dental and health savings online marketplace in the U.S., helping more than a million people to affordably access quality healthcare services. Our mission is to empower consumers with the tools, information, and services that they need to live happier, healthier lives. www.dentalplans.com.