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Dental Plans

Many typical medical plans do not provide dental coverage, which often must be purchased separately. As a result, dental plans can be a highly attractive employee benefit. The four main types of dental coverage are:

  • Dental Health Maintenance Organization (DHMO). Like a Health Maintenance Organization, a DHMO features a primary care dentist. Patients must generally see dentists within the DHMO network to receive coverage.  
  • Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) or Participating Dental Network (PDN). Dental patients in a Preferred Provider Organization or Participating Dental Network may generally see any licensed dentist; however, patients pay lower costs for choosing a dentist within the PPO or PDN network. 
  • Dental Point of Service (POS). Patients in a dental POS plan have the choice of seeing a dentist either in or outside of a network. Out-of-pocket costs are usually greater for visits to a dentist who is not within a network.
  • Dental Indemnity. Dental indemnity plans permit patients to see any licensed dentist. Patients pay a deductible and sometimes copayments or coinsurance.

A Table or Schedule of Allowance Plan is a type of plan that provides a list of covered services with an assigned dollar amount. That dollar amount represents the amount the plan will pay for those services that are covered. The patient pays the difference.


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