Local Dental has committed to making dental care more affordable for everyone after introducing a new health fund rebate scheme.
Local Dental — which has clinics in Deniliquin, Finley and Hay — is now a preferred provider for recognised health funds HCF, CBHS and Medibank.
This is in addition to the instant online claiming service for all health funds, known as HICAPS, that was already available at all three clinics.
Recognising that dental health can sometimes be put in the ‘‘back seat’’ due to high costs, business owners and husband and wife team Dr Jimmi Patel and Dr Kritika Mehra say this new rebate scheme will benefit local families.
‘‘Dental health can be expensive, and we know young families with three or four kids do have to work to a budget,’’ Dr Mehra said.
‘‘This will help make it affordable and provide easy access for everyone,’’ she said.
‘‘With HCF and CBHS, all preventative treatment — check-ups, X-rays, scale and clean and mouth guards - there will be minimal or no gap, based on your level of cover,’’ Dr Patel added.
‘‘With Medibank, there are capped prices so there are no surprises in your bill. You also get a percentage back of the charge, which could be 55, 70, 85 or 100 per cent depending on your cover,’’ he said.
Dr Mehra said Medibank patients can also claim a free dental check-up and clean every year, over and above their annual dental limit. However this excludes X-rays, and a two month waiting period applies, she added.
‘‘With Medibank, there are generally lower out-of-pockets than non-members’ choice providers,’’ Dr Mehra said.
Local Dental has also introduced a gap free treatment at all of its centres associated with the Child Dental Benefits Scheme (CDBS) — a Medicare funded program that provides a range of dental care services for eligible children, including examinations, cleaning, X-rays, fillings, fissure sealants, extractions and root canal therapy.
CDBS does not cover orthodontics or cosmetic dental treatment, but if you receive Family Tax Benefit Part A, your child may be entitled to up to $1000 worth of dental treatment over a two-year period.
Dr Mehra pointed to a recent news article that reported that in the last year 24 babies less than 12 months old were admitted to hospital for extractions and tooth fillings, with some requiring general anaesthetic.
‘‘In my opinion these would be preventable for those with CDBS,’’ Dr Mehra said.
‘‘In the same period, 2500 children under the age of eight have required dental treatment under general anaesthetic, which is a 55 per cent increase over the last decade.
‘‘As dental practitioners, we are appalled by these statistics and have decided to offer no gap for the children who are eligible for this dental scheme.
‘‘We hope to see an increase in the number of families using the service for preventative treatments before emergency intervention is needed.’’
For more information on Local Dental and its services, visit the team at 404 Charlotte St, Deniliquin, or call 58813468.