Dental Insurance Setup in Australia

It is a known fact that dental costs in Melbourne are very high. In fact, statistics suggest that a large number of people neglect teeth related problems, thanks to high treatment costs. Although preventive care helps to lower instances of dental problems, information about the cost and scope of insurance coverage isn’t clear. A list of the different insurance options and their coverage is mentioned below;

Medicare:
Routine dental checkups are not covered under Medicare. But it does offer rebates for a limited number of dental visit to people experiencing chronic dental problems. To qualify for these benefits, patients should have a GP Plan and must have been referred to the dentist by the GP. Children between the age groups of 2-17 are offered dental assistance through the Child Dental Benefits Schedule.

Private Insurance:
Private dental insurance is expensive in Australia. They do not offer full cover as well. For instance, some insurance companies cover only 75% of the costs incurred on general dental care like checkups, filling, basic extraction, etc. The patient has to look for other sources to pay the gap fees which can be substantial. Basic dental care and treatment is also provided under some general healthcare insurance schemes. You will have to read the fine print carefully about what is considered routine and what is considered major treatment.

Insurance by Dentists:
Sometimes, dentists too offer insurance programs for common dental programs. But these are often restricted to people with healthy teeth; there’s hardly a need to use the insurance. Besides, expensive treatments like bridges, braces, implants, or cosmetic treatments are excluded.

No Gap Insurance:
Some insurance companies offer free dental and hygiene checkups, which help to fill/reduce gap costs.

There’s no denying of the fact that dental insurance costs are very high and almost beyond the reach of average Australians. No wonder that only 60% of Australians visit a dentist for routine checkups. They’d rather seek treatment in Southeast Asian countries where costs are comparatively cheap, than pay through their nose in Australia.

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