Connecting Dental and Healthcare

  • November 21, 2019

    According to Blue Cross Blue Shield Health of America, serious dental health conditions like root canal, periodontal disease, and gingivitis often coincide with increased risk of cardiovascular disease, anemia, and other health conditions along with higher overall healthcare cost. People with gum or dental conditions are:

    • 25% more likely to suffer from heart disease
    • 2 times as likely to visit the ER or have a hospital stay
    • Likely to suffer from autoimmune disorders, anemia, gastro-intestinal disorders, or renal disease

    At Premera, we have members with medical, pharmacy, and dental benefits. This allows us to look at dental through the lens of overall health and provides us with a unique perspective on opportunities to make healthcare work better.

    Using claims technology, we can identify members that may have dental care gaps or medical conditions and reach out through real-time member messaging. If a member has a medical condition or is taking a medication that has oral side effects, a notification can be sent to the member via letter, a phone call, or, if a member opts in, text. This type of preventive medicine can help spot health issues early, before they become more serious and harder to treat. The mouth-body connection for whole health, and experience from administering ACA-compliant medical plans embedding pediatric dental benefits, is providing useful information for designing a medical plan that includes dental treatment.

    At Premera, we feel the patient-dentist relationship provides a great opportunity to make healthcare work better. We value dentists for the pivotal role they play in creating an optimum dental plan for the whole health of the people who use their services.

    Learn more about our dental resources, available online training, and credentialing process.

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