Dental Lifeline Network recently joined 80 organizations in an effort to urge congressional support of Medicare coverage for medically-necessary oral/dental health therapies. Medically Necessary Oral Health Care refers to care that is needed when dental infections/diseases may complicate or stand in the way of receiving important, Medicare-covered treatments like chemotherapy, immunosuppression, organ transplants, orthopedic surgery, and heart valve repair.
View the joint statement to learn more about extending Medicare coverage to medically necessary oral and dental health therapies, as well as to view the full list of supporting organizations
Medicare beneficiaries currently do not receive oral/dental care even when considered medically necessary for the treatment of Medicare-covered diseases. Due to this lack of coverage, DLN frequently assists beneficiaries in these cases, as many who are on Medicare have no other means of affording medically-necessary, comprehensive dental treatment.
Untreated oral microbial infections are closely linked to a wide range of costly chronic conditions including diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Additionally, the lack of medically necessary oral/dental care heightens the risk of costly medical complications, increasing the financial burden on Medicare, beneficiaries, and taxpayers.
To learn more about the oral health connection to diseases, visit our Beyond Teeth page.