State health exchange has kids' dental plans

Published: Wednesday, Jun. 26, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 6B
Last Modified: Thursday, Jun. 27, 2013 - 8:42 am

Six insurance firms will offer pediatric dental coverage on California's new health care exchange beginning in October.

Anthem Blue Cross, Blue Shield of California, Delta Dental, Health Net, Liberty Dental and Premier Access Dental were the firms selected Tuesday by Covered California, the state exchange.

Unlike comprehensive health insurance, Californians are not required under federal law to purchase pediatric dental care, which is available to serve children and teenagers up to age 19.

But Covered California Director Peter Lee said that providing affordable dental policies is a key part of the exchange's mission to boost health statewide, particularly for young and vulnerable residents.

Only one of the six insurers, Health Net, will offer its pediatric dental care only in conjunction with its comprehensive health insurance plans. Policies from other providers can be purchased as stand-alone products.

In Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado and Yolo counties, the lowest-priced plan will be $10 for a Blue Shield health maintenance organization plan. The highest premium will be $33 for an Anthem preferred provider organization policy.

Call Jim Sanders, Bee Capitol Bureau, (916) 326-5538. Follow him on Twitter @jwsanders55.

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