Wednesday, December 07, 2011

The Morning Drill: December 7, 2011

Los Angeles Roadrunners November 26, 2011

Santa Monica, California

Good Morning.

Getting a later start this morning here in California, so on to day's dentistry and health headlines:

La. Medicaid reimburses physicians for fluoride varnish

Effective December 1, the Louisiana Medicaid program is now reimbursing physicians for applying fluoride varnish twice each year to the teeth of Medicaid recipients between the ages of 6 months and 5 years.

Previously, Medicaid only covered this service when performed by a dental provider, according to the state Department of Health and Hospitals.

With the implementation of the updated fluoridation varnish policy, physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, registered nurses, and licensed practical nurses will now be reimbursed for applying fluoride varnish.
Medicaid money runs out, and braces stay on
When you don't have much money, and receive medical and dental care at state expense, it's rare to complain.

Texas received only 712 complaints from Medicaid patients in the last year. But sometimes the quality of care becomes so questionable, patients speak up.

The case of a Garland girl points to some weaknesses in Medicaid Orthodontics, a program that's paid out hundreds of millions of dollars to Texas dentists in the last three years.
You can actually watch Anntornett Taylor grow up through her dental records, in the still photos taken of her when she visited her orthodontist.

Medicaid paid for her first set of braces when she was 12 years old. Now she is 21. She has had braces for nine years. And they are still on.
"It would be extremely unusual for a patient to be in braces for nine years," said Dr. Larry Tadlock, Associate Clinical Professor at Baylor College of Dentistry.
Prospect of new tax to cover expense of universal dental care
A DRAMATIC expansion in access to dental services, estimated to cost $9 billion over four years, has been proposed in a confidential report by a committee appointed by the government.

The report recommends that the Gillard government begin developing the first stages of a universal dental scheme next year with a view to scaling the scheme up in later years, taking account of the strains on the government's promise to deliver a surplus in the May budget.

The interim report, delivered recently to the government by the National Advisory Council on Dental Health, has called for priority to be given to ensuring dental treatment for young people and those on low incomes.
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It also raises the prospect that a new tax to fund a full-scale public dental scheme may be necessary, stating that ''other financing options may be required''.

The council, chaired by a former senior health official, Mary Murnane, is believed to have proposed a range of options including a mix of the existing state government and school dental schemes, the teen dental scheme and the present Medicare chronic disease dental scheme.
Three Ways an Athlete Can Prevent Dental Injuries During Sports
Broken teeth and various dental injuries can be common during sports, especially for an athlete that participates in contact sports. There are a lot of different ways that dental injuries can occur to an athlete, including if he or she gets hit in the mouth with a ball or hard object. Dental injuries can be very painful, cause a lot of internal problems, and can be very costly to fix.

Here are three ways that an athlete can prevent dental injuries during sports, which can help keep him or her safe and healthy.
  • Always Wear a Mouthguard
  • Use Helmets or a Faceguard
  • Always Remove Retainers Prior To Playing Sports
Enjoy your morning/afternoon!

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