When it comes to our children, we undoubtedly want what’s best for them, both emotionally, and physically as well. Take their health and fitness for example. We all want our children to grow up as fit, healthy, and happy as they possibly can. However, children are constantly developing and growing, and often do not lose all of their baby teeth for quite some time. As a result, many of them often have trouble with their teeth for one reason or another, and it often requires a dentist to take a look at the problem in question. Now, if they’re lucky, the problem is a quick and easy fix, and does not cost that much money to rectify. If however, the problem is more serious, and a slightly more complex procedure is required, then costs can begin to add up, and that is where potential problems can arise. Often, further treatments and checkups will be required, which can also cost quite a bit, and the amount of money owed will soon begin to add up. To help combat this, and make life easier for US citizens, the Affordable Care Act, was created, in order for people who don’t have expensive health and medical insurance, to be able to get the health care and treatment they require, at a more affordable price. This includes dental care, at least, it is supposed to.
So what is the problem? – Basically, since its initial inception, the Affordable Care Act, has proven to be a real headache for a number of citizens looking to buy health insurance under this particular act. It was created supposedly to make life easier for people looking to buy health insurance, yet in actual fact, it has proven to be extremely complex, time consuming, and frustrating to say the very least. The entire premise of this health act was flawed from the onset. Sure, it was created with good intentions, but in actual fact, the entire act has been described by many as ‘one giant grey area’ leaving people confused about what is covered, what isn’t, what is necessary, what isn’t etc, etc. This it turns out, is especially true in regards to children’s dental care.
Generally, children’s dental plans can actually be sold in two separate ways. In separate stand alone dental plans, or included in medical insurance plans. Whilst the Affordable Care act was supposed to make things such as dental care for children, extremely easy, it turns out that thanks to a legal loophole, the act may leave children without any dental care whatsoever. The act only covers certain states of the US, and as rules and regulations can differ and vary so dramatically from state to state, some children may be left without dental insurance, without their parents ever realizing until it’s too late. Things continue to get confusing however, so please bear with us. By law, even though dental health insurance is part of the essential health benefits, families can actually opt not to choose dental health coverage for their children if they’d prefer. Though the Affordable Care Act requires by law, pediatric dental health insurance to be purchased, if a family chooses not to purchase it, in certain states, they will not be penalized for opting out. Some families opt not to choose the insurance for instance, due to the cost. It varies largely from state to state, but certain children in certain states, are going without dental health insurance, just because of a ridiculous loophole that is more confusing than quantum and particle physics combined. Children’s advocates are now on the case however, and have declared that their main priority is to ensure that families that do purchase stand alone dental insurance for their children, will still be getting subsidiaries if they are eligible to do so. Campaigners are lobbying for this health care act to be reviewed and simplified, and made as black and white as possible, so that people who choose to purchase coverage via this act, know exactly what they are and are not eligible for.
Hopefully we don’t all feel like David at the end of the day:
Marissa Evans is a San Diego native and writes for the Washington Post.