Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Senator Bernard Sanders and America's Oral Health Crisis

Senator Bernard Sanders (I-Vermont)

Another report from another U.S. Senate Committee on America's oral health crisis. Ho Hum....

Liberal firebrand Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) released a report Wednesday that concludes America faces a "dental crisis" and urgently needs to boost the number of dentists and dental assistants while expanding Medicaid's dental benefit to cover adults.

According to the report:

• more than 47 million people live in places where it is difficult to access dental care;

• more than 130 million Americans do not have dental insurance;

• about 17 million low-income children see a dentist less than once a year; and

• only 45 percent of Americans age 2 and older saw a dental provider in the past 12 months.

The report recommends increasing the number of dental providers through the National Health Service Corps and focusing on oral health as part of the healthcare reform law's expansion of federally qualified health centers. It also recommends increasing Medicaid payment rates and boosting preventive services and education.


Another report to file away and forget.

Senator, we in the profession know the problems and they are multi-factoral. However, the MAJOR problem is: WHO WILL PAY FOR THE DENTAL CARE?

Many states have been cutting dental medicaid benefits because they can no longer afford them. California has not been providing adult dental medicaid benefits for over two years.

Pew and their charitable trust wants to push a cheaper dental mid-level provider instead of a "more" expensive dentist to provide care. But, who willl pay for the overhead and the supervision?

The federal government is tapped out, ObamaCare with the individual mandates, Medicare cuts and taxes go online in 2014. How do you propose to fund the NHSC or build new federal qualified health centers?

Yeah, I know, you are a socialist and will just tax the rich.

Place this report in the circular file.

Note also that the American Dental Association was not called to testify at the Senate hearing.

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