Each state has its own guidelines when determining if Medicaid extends to dental procedures. Even in states where dental is covered by Medicaid, many dentists refuse to take it due to low reimbursement rates and heavy administrative overhead. Yet those from lower-income families are those most often in need of tooth replacement.
Unfortunately, neither Medicare nor Medicaid covers dental implants for low-income families or seniors in our state. This is a major problem as many seniors suffer from severe dental problems and have no means of remedying them without health insurance covering them.
Below, we’ll discuss what Medicaid does cover and alternatives to getting the implants that you need.
What Does Medicaid Cover in Missouri?
Up until recently, Medicaid did not cover any type of dental work at all. Today, adults can get fillings, extractions, and other routine dental work covered. While that’s a step in the right direction, there are thousands of Missouri residents who aren’t getting the coverage they really need and it’s severely reducing their quality of life.
Not only do they have to deal with the fact that some of their teeth are missing, but during that period, their jawbones are receding, making it more difficult to get dental implants in the future. That begs the question: What options are at the disposal of those who are currently on Medicaid, Medicare, or without any dental coverage whatsoever?
Dental Implant Grants
Luckily, there are those in the government who acknowledge that dental implants aren’t just a cosmetic procedure, but a necessary procedure that improves the overall quality of patient’s lives and prevents future damage to the gums and jawbone.
While straight Medicaid and Medicare may not cover these procedures, it is possible to apply for a federal grant. These are called Cosmetic Dentistry Grants or CDGs. It is free to apply for this grant and available to everyone.
Eligibility requirements are related to whether or not the procedure will be successful. In order to be accepted for the grant, you must simply show that your oral health is sufficient. Dental implants require that you have enough jawbone left to support the abutments. The implants themselves are installed directly into the abutments. To determine if you’re eligible, you need only come to Acton Implants and we will provide an x-ray to the CDG officials. Once you’ve received the grant, we can begin the process of setting you up with a new set of teeth. While the assessment itself is free, you may be required to pay for the x-ray.
The Cosmetic Dentistry Grants Program
The CDG program is funded by qualifying dentists and private donors all across the USA and Canada. The program gives away over $1 million in grants each year. While Medicaid or Medicare may not cover the costs associated with dental implants, it may cover costs related to your examination. This can include x-rays.
How to Apply for a CDG Grant
The first step in the process is to find a participating dentist in the CDG program. That dentist will provide a full exam and depending on the overall quality of your oral health, recommend you for the CDG program. If you do, you will qualify for the grant.
Please note that the grant may not cover 100% of the procedure but will cover a large portion of it. It will reduce your costs.
Other Ways to Pay for Your Dental Implants
If you can’t or don’t want to apply for a CDG, there may be another way to fund your dental implants. Acton Implants offers financing options for those who cannot afford to make a lump sum payment at the time of treatment. This option can work for those on a budget who cannot afford to make payment all at once. Give us a call to find out if you qualify for financing.
There are also other grants that you can apply for to get your dental implants covered without having to pay for them yourself.
Talk to Acton Implants Today
If you’re struggling with tooth loss, Acton Implants will work closely with you to figure out a way that you can get the implants you need even if you can’t afford them. Part of our mission is to provide dental implants to everyone and so our costs are lower. Give us a call or talk to us online to set up an appointment.