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Dingell, Curtis Fight for Increased Dental Insurance on Federal Marketplace

WASHINGTON — Today, Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI-12) and Congressman John Curtis (R-UT-03) introduced the bipartisan Increasing Access to Dental Insurance Act to expand access to private dental coverage for millions of Americans. 
“Dental care is the pathway to good health for the entire body, but access to quality dental coverage is out of reach for too many Americans. Recently, I have undergone several medical procedures due to osteomyelitis which stemmed from a dental infection, and this could have resulted in my death if left untreated. It’s clear – a lack of dental care can worsen other serious medical conditions. But without quality dental coverage, Americans go without vital oral care.” said Rep. Dingell. “I am luckier than 99% of people, and this is a threat anyone could face. Every American deserves coverage and access to quality care, and we must do more to educate the public about the importance of dental care.”
“Routine, preventive dental care is critical to maintaining oral health” said Rep. Curtis. “The Increasing Access to Dental Insurance Act is a commonsense way to expand access to dental care, without spending any taxpayer dollars, by making affordable dental insurance more broadly available through the federal marketplace. Utahns looking for dental coverage should have as many options as possible.”
Oral health affects more than just the mouth; individuals with dental coverage are significantly more likely to visit the dentist and receive care that prevents and treats common chronic medical conditions including diabetes and heart disease.  
Currently, many Americans are prohibited from purchasing dental coverage on the federal marketplace unless they also purchase health insurance. H.R. 9567 would eliminate this prohibition, creating more competition in the marketplace and bringing access to affordable oral health services to more Americans.
Groups supporting the bill include the American Association of Kidney Patients, American Council of Life Insurers, American Society of Nephrology, CareQuest Institute for Oral Health, Delta Dental Plans Association, Dialysis Patient Citizens, Families USA, Guardian Life, National Association of Dental Plans, National Kidney Foundation, Nonprofit Kidney Care Alliance, Principal Financial Group, Sun Life, and United Concordia Companies, Inc.
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