Dental HMO : What is an HMO? How does it help me?

Choosing an HMO Dental Plan may be the best route for most individuals and families in the current economy. HMO Dental Plans insure that people receive care which is customized to meet not only their dental health needs but their budgetary situation as well.

How HMO Dental Plans work

HMO Dental Plans cover basic routine checkups with the added feature of cost-control for the patient. These plans also known as ‘capitation dental plans’ pay a set monthly per-client fee to dentists who elect to participate in their network. The monthly fee is paid regardless of whether or not a dental visit took place in any particular month.

How HMO Dental Plans Differ from Dental Insurance Plans

The company selling the plan has a network agreement with dentists to discount fees in exchange for receiving patient referrals. Many dentist just starting a practice are eager to discount fees in exchange for gaining dental clients upon which to build their practice.

What HMO Dental Plans Cover

Basic coverage is provided for regular exams, dental cleaning and x-rays with no fee being required. Procedures requiring more extensive dental work such as crowns and dentures may require a co-pay with the co-pay being much lower than conventional dental plans.

Advantages of HMO Dental Plans

Perhaps the main advantage is fewer people particularly the elderly are refused coverage. With many plans from which to choose it is easier for those on fixed income to find dental services which fit into their budgetary considerations.

Plan providers have a large network of participating dentists over 8000 around the country. There is usually no appointment waiting period for basic services. More extensive services can usually be scheduled within a 6-12 month period.

Are There Disadvantages Associated With HMO Dental Plans?

Depending on whom you ask, some people will cite one disadvantage being that the less treatment the dentist performs during a visit, the more profit he derives from the monthly fee received. Since HMO Dental Plans require the use of only one dentist for all dental needs HMO Dental Plans are not advisable for those who travel frequently.

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