Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Study: Providing dental insurance not enough to induce americans to seek care

Date:
January 15, 2014
Source:
University of Maryland, Baltimore
Summary:
Providing people with dental insurance does not necessarily mean that they will use it and seek dental care, according to a new study.

Providing people with dental insurance does not necessarily mean that they will use it and seek dental care, according to a new study from the University of Maryland School of Dentistry, published online in the American Journal of Public Health. The research suggests that outreach and education are needed to ensure that people value their dental health and use their coverage to seek appropriate dental care. The study has particular value in this era of health reform, and the researchers hope that policymakers will use the findings in designing future programs and initiatives, according to first author Richard J. Manski, DDS, MBA, PhD, professor and chief of Dental Public Health at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry.

"You can't just hand people coverage and say, 'there, that's better,'" says Dr. Manski. "You need to offer some inducements, some promotional campaign to change people's attitudes and beliefs. We hope this starts the process of a new way of thinking about the problem."

The researchers examined data from the Health and Retirement Study of 2008, looking at older Americans who had dental coverage and those who didn't, and examining who was using dental care. They also looked at personal characteristics such as race, gender, marital status, age, health status and more.

The scientists found that providing dental coverage to uninsured older Americans who do not tend to use dental care will not necessarily mean that, once insured, those people will seek dental care. Rather, if policymakers want people to use dental coverage and seek care, they have to go a step further than just providing insurance. While many of the factors that keep people from seeking care -- such as age and gender -- can't be changed, other factors could be influenced by outreach.

These factors include knowledge, beliefs, attitudes, tastes, health status, income and more. Education and marketing outreach about the importance of dental care to overall health could alter these factors and make people who get coverage more likely to use it. Improving the economy and the unemployment rate could also affect the problem for the better. The number of providers available in the market could also affect the likelihood that patients will use their dental coverage, supporting the development of programs encouraging people to enter the field of dentistry.

The data also indicate that getting people to use dental coverage to seek care is not a short-term process, Manski says: "We need to set long-term goals for such things and understand that dental coverage and use is a long-term issue, so that we don't get frustrated that rates of use aren't going up right away."

Oral health is a critical part of a person's overall health, says Dr. Manski, and the study has implications for other types of health insurance as well. "Dentistry and dental coverage is a perfect experimental model for health care," he says. "There are lessons to be learned for overall health coverage and use as well."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Maryland, Baltimore. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Richard J. Manski, John F. Moeller, Haiyan Chen. Dental Care Coverage and Use: Modeling Limitations and Opportunities. American Journal of Public Health, 2013; e1 DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2013.301693

Cite This Page:

University of Maryland, Baltimore. "Study: Providing dental insurance not enough to induce americans to seek care." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115172613.htm>.
University of Maryland, Baltimore. (2014, January 15). Study: Providing dental insurance not enough to induce americans to seek care. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115172613.htm
University of Maryland, Baltimore. "Study: Providing dental insurance not enough to induce americans to seek care." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115172613.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) Here are three things you need to know about the deadly Ebola outbreak's progression this week. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 28, 2014) The World Health Organisation has called for the regulation of electronic cigarettes as both tobacco and medical products. Ciara Lee looks at the impact of the move on the tobacco industry. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) CDC director Tom Frieden says the Ebola outbreak is even worse than he feared. But he also said there's still hope to contain it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins