Record number of people signed up early for ACA plans, sources say | Report: Group dental practices, DSOs on the rise | N.J. dentist settles Medicaid fraud allegations for $250K
November 9, 2017
NADP SmartBrief
News affecting dental benefits
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Record number of people signed up early for ACA plans, sources say
Affordable Care Act plan enrollment in the first few days of open enrollment this year reportedly exceeded last year's exchange activity, despite fears that outreach and advertising cuts would suppress enrollment. A source close to the process said more than 200,000 consumers selected health plans on the first day of enrollment, up from approximately 100,000 last year, and the number of visitors on the first day increased from 750,000 last year to more than 1 million this year.
The Hill (11/6) 
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Industry News
Report: Group dental practices, DSOs on the rise
An analysis by the American Dental Association's Health Policy Institute found that 8.3% of dentists were affiliated with a dental service organization last year, compared with 7.4% in 2015, and other types of group practices are also growing, says Health Policy Institute Vice President Marko Vujicic. Younger dentists were more likely than their older counterparts to be affiliated with a DSO, and women were more likely than men to work with a DSO.
DrBicuspid (free registration) (11/7) 
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N.J. dentist settles Medicaid fraud allegations for $250K
Louis Tratenberg, a dentist in Springfield, N.J., entered a settlement with the state comptroller office requiring him to repay Medicaid $250,000 for improperly billing the program from January 2011 to May 2016. Tratenberg was accused of submitting Medicaid claims for improperly documented services and overbilling for some claims, according to the comptroller's office.
Union News Daily (N.J.) (11/7) 
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Annual growth rate for dental spending slower than for health care
Spending on dental care grew by 2.88% annually from 1996 through 2013, compared with 4% annual growth in spending on overall health care, researchers reported in JAMA. More than half of the spending growth on dental and health care was attributed to rising prices, but an aging population also had an effect.
DrBicuspid (free registration) (11/7) 
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Insurers ramp up efforts to promote open enrollment after funding cuts
Insurers ramp up efforts to promote open enrollment after funding cuts
(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Health insurers are ramping up efforts to raise awareness about the Affordable Care Act open enrollment period, which started Nov. 1, in order to fill gaps left by the government's decision to slash spending on ACA advertising and outreach. Centene, Oscar Health and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota are investing in advertising to encourage more people to sign up, while Florida Blue and Independence Blue Cross are bringing experts into the community for face-to-face assistance.
Reuters (11/6) 
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Free dental clinics a last resort for desperate patients
A significant proportion of the US population lacks dental insurance and cannot afford dental care, and some 55 million live in areas that have a shortage of dental professionals, leaving hundreds to line up at free dental clinics like those run by Remote Area Medical. Stan Brock founded RAM to provide dental care in the world's poorest countries, but 90% of the organization's work now is in the US, serving people who are so desperate for care that some have extracted their own teeth.
The Nation (11/3) 
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Oral Health
Smoking, drinking, genetics cause dental fillings to fail
Conventional amalgam dental fillings fail at about the same rate as newer composite resin fillings within the first year, but composite fillings were somewhat less likely to fail after five years, according to a study in Frontiers in Medicine. Alcohol consumption, smoking and certain MMP2 gene variants raise the risk of failure, the researchers found.
WebMD (11/6) 
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Company News
Webinar explores future of individual dental
Join NADP and presenters from Careington and for this 60-minute webinar on Nov. 16 at 1 p.m. CST. For details and registration, visit the NADP Knowledge Center.
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Sponsored webinar explores advantages of outsourcing mailroom operations
For dental payers, the mailroom can easily become a cumbersome task with the large amount of incoming mail and claims. A digital mailroom solution can be an effective and cost-savvy approach to streamline the flow of information. Join NADP on Dec. 14 at 1 p.m. CST for the free, sponsored webinar, ICS Digital Mailroom, Mail Intake Designed for the Modern Dental Payer. Visit the Knowledge Center for more details and to register.
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