The changing landscape of dental Medicaid: Part 1
By Michael W. Davis, DDS, DrBicuspid.com contributing writer
January 8, 2014 -- Some experts examining the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have estimated a 25% to 33% increase in eligibility. What they may miss is that enrollment eligibility for potential patients does not necessarily equate into actual patients having access to dental care. Eligibility for services is a different element than access to those services. While this makes perfect logic to small or large healthcare business owners or managers, it may be outside the comprehension abilities of Washington bureaucrats.
In 2007, the U.S. Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) issued a troubling report, which stated 31% of reviewed dental Medicaid submissions were improper. Again, please take note of that number -- 31%!
That degree of dental Medicaid fraud, waste, and abuse is not sustainable. The taxpayer cannot and should not fund such a dysfunctional program, no matter how well intentioned. Throwing limited public money at problems of disadvantaged children with dental needs, without adequate oversight, regulation, and enforcement represents an abuse to the American taxpayer. That unfortunate reality is slowly changing