Dental health is important to everyone. Poor oral health can lead to serious illnesses such as cardiovascular disease and pneumonia. While the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) does provide dental coverage for some eligible veterans, most veterans are not eligible for dental care through the VA. Like many Americans, veterans can be confused about their dental insurance options and how to take care of their oral health. Read on to learn what you need to know about veterans dental insurance.
All veterans need at least primary preventive care like regular dental cleanings, but serious dental problems are a major concern for veterans. According to CareQuest, 42 percent of veterans reported gum problems or bone loss, and 52 percent reported having or had cavities treated. Among veterans with severe mental illness, 60 percent had poor oral health, and 33 percent of veterans had dental problems so severe that it was difficult to eat. Veterans often lack access to regular preventive care while on duty, which can compromise their oral health.
While many Americans believe the VA provides comprehensive dental care for veterans, in reality 85% of veterans are ineligible for VA dental care. While some veterans obtain dental insurance through their employer or other government programs, many veterans do not have dental insurance.
VA Provides Dental Care to Veterans Qualified for Over 200 Dental Practices Across the U.S. To be eligible for VA dental care, you must meet one of the following:
- You Tooth injury or condition due to military service.
- You were a prisoner of war.
- Your service-related disability is rated as 100% disabling.
- Your service-related illness is aggravated by your dental
- Your dental condition complicates another treatment provided by the VA.
VA also covers one-time dental care conditions if you meet any of the following:
- After you serve 90 days or more, Request dental care within 180 days of being discharged from the hospital (excluding disgraceful discharge).
- You are enrolled in a VA-sponsored homeless rehabilitation program for at least 60 days and require dental care to relieve pain or seek employment.
- You participate in the USC Chapter 38, Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Program and need dental care to enter, stay, or meet the goals set forth in the program. ?
Veterans who are enrolled in the VA health care system but are not eligible for VA dental care are eligible for VA dental insurance and receive a private discount program through the VA Dental Insurance Program (VADIP). Dependents of the Virginia Civilian Health and Medical Program are also eligible for VADIP. This veterans dental insurance plan offers plans that cover diagnostic, preventive and restorative care, as well as dental surgery and emergency dental care.
Which companies offer insurance plans through VADIP?
Delta Dental of California and MetLife each offer discounted dental insurance plans for VADIP.
How much does VA dental insurance cost?
The cost of VA dental insurance depends on the specific plan you choose and how many people you insure. In general, plans with high deductibles have more affordable copays, while plans with higher deductibles have lower monthly deductibles.
VETSmile, a pilot program run by the VA and the Center for Care and Payments Innovation (CCPI), works with dental care providers to offer veterans free and discounted dental services. VETSmile currently serves New York veterans and wholesalers who enroll in VA medical services but are not eligible for VA dental care. Patients must also be residents of 250 percent or less of the federal poverty line at the cheap sweatshirt wholesale location.
How to Get VA Dental Insurance
You can sign up for VADIP at any time by visiting MetLife or California Delta Dental’s VADIP program page.
Many other private dental insurance companies offer discounted dental care to veterans. Dentist offices and community dental health plans sometimes offer special or free dental care for veterans. Other options for dental care or insurance for veterans include:
Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP)
If you are in retired uniform Service Worker members, you may be eligible for FEDVIP. FEDVIP has open enrollment each year, but newly retired service members can enroll between 31 days before their retirement date and 60 days after their retirement. FEDVIP offers six national and four regional dental programs to choose from.
Everyone for Veterans
A non-profit organization founded in 2008, each veteran has a A network of dentists who volunteer to provide dental care to low-income veterans. To qualify, you must have been deployed to combat or imminent danger, have limited financial resources, and have no or no dental insurance. Spouses and minor children of eligible veterans and survivors of military sexual trauma are also eligible.
Healthy Oral Campaign
One day a year, Aspen Dental provides free dental care to veterans and military families. MouthMobile, Aspen’s mobile dental clinic, also provides free care to veterans across the country. MouthMobile is equipped to provide dental treatment (including X-rays) and is suitable for disabled people.
The nonprofit organization Veterans Dentists has provided more than $500,000 worth of dental care to veterans since its founding in 2011. Veterans Dentists currently serve California veterans living in Orange County, Los Angeles, the Inland Empire and San Diego. ?