Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Minn. non-profit to offer LTC resident dental plan

A Minnesota nonprofit group has announced a pilot program that offers dental insurance specifically designed for long-term-care residents and their families.  Care facilities that join will offer the insurance, said Dr. Michael Helgeson, chief executive officer of Apple Tree Dental.  The nonprofit group will refer patients to their regular dentists. If a patient doesn't have a regular dentist, Apple Tree will provide dental care on-site.  The insurance plan was announced Thursday night. The organization will start providing mobile dental service in July to residents of Rochester-area nursing homes, assisted-living facilities and homes for people with special needs, Helgeson said. The insurance will be offered only in the Twin Cities and Rochester area at first, he said.  The dental plan has no deductible and covers fillings, single dentures, crowns, root canals and treatment for gum disease at 100 percent. There are additional costs if the annual maximum of $2,000 is exceeded.  It's less expensive to provide dental insurance than to pay for staff and transportation for one dental visit outside a nursing home, Helgeson said.

Source/more:  Rochester MN Post Bulletin, http://www.postbulletin.com/newsmanager/templates/localnews_story.asp?a=329671&z=2

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