The Dental Club, the affordable alternative to insurance that offers individual access to California's largest independent dental network, today announced a 118 percent increase in the number of consumers using its network for dental care over the last six months.
As of March 2003, more than 11,000 dental patients were enrolled in the network.
"A lot of people are falling through the cracks of the existing insurance system, and The Dental Club is a creative and practical way for these people to get affordable, high quality dental care," said Dr. Michael Grossman, president and CEO of First Dental Health, the parent company of The Dental Club, and a board certified periodontist. "The tremendous growth we have seen in the use of our network over the last year demonstrates that The Dental Club is an attractive option for people who don't have insurance."
The Dental Club is a retail product of First Dental Health, the largest independent dental PPO network in California.
For a $60 annual fee ($84 for families), members can receive a 25-60 percent discount, depending on the service, based on a pre-established fee schedule. The Dental Club is not insurance, but instead resembles the Price Club model where members are provided with a membership card that entitles them to visit any member dentist or specialist office.
"We are using The Dental Club and have found it to be a great money saver," said Ned Israelsen, of San Diego, who purchased a family membership. "With a family of six, we have enjoyed the benefits for several cleanings, fillings, checkups and a couple of crowns. It has paid for itself several times over."
In addition to discounts on high quality dental work, The Dental Club offers several other benefits, including no waiting period, no claims forms and no annual maximum.
The Dental Club also saw a jump in the number of member dentists participating in the discount network over the last six months, making it convenient and practical for consumers to use the program for dental services ranging from routine cleanings to root canals. Currently, more than 10,000 dental offices are available through the network, including specialists such as orthodontists, periodontists, endodontists and oral surgeons. The number of participating dental offices is up from 7,000 at the end of the third quarter last year.
For more information on The Dental Club and to look up participating dentists by zip code and a schedule of fees, visit www.thedentalclub.com.
"National Cover the Uninsured Week should be a time for exploring solutions as well as exposing the fact that more than 40 percent of California residents don't have dental insurance," said Grossman. "The Dental Club is an alternative to dental insurance that can make top quality oral healthcare affordable to many Californians."
Cover the Uninsured Week is a weeklong series of national and local activities that will take place from Monday, March 10, through Sunday, March 16, 2003, in an effort to sensitize the public and opinion leaders to the plight of the more than 41 million Americans who lack health insurance. For more information visit www.covertheuninsured.com.