New Scientist article Posted November 20, 2018 05:59:07Aetna’s dental insurance is “a little pricey”, the insurer’s chief executive told analysts on Tuesday.
The US insurer said it has paid for more than 200,000 patients’ dental insurance over the past two years, and said it expects to spend $300 million over the next two years on dental care.
“We do believe we’re going to be able to provide a level of coverage that is reasonable and affordable,” Aetna chief executive Mark Bertolini told analysts.
“But we’re not quite there yet.”
Mr Bertolini did not elaborate on what those costs would be.
“The key issue is that we’re looking at it from a different perspective, that is, that there’s a gap between what the consumer pays and what they’re actually getting,” he said.
“What we’re actually looking at is a price point that’s fair for everyone.”
The Aetnea chief executive said that gap was largely caused by the fact that insurance companies and government entities “aren’t really sure what they want to pay” and that “they’re just trying to figure out how to do it.”
“So that gap is something that we want to address,” he added.
Mr Bartolini said the company is also taking steps to improve access to its dental coverage.””
We believe that we have a level that is fair to everybody, including for those who have the least.”
Mr Bartolini said the company is also taking steps to improve access to its dental coverage.
“There’s a real problem that’s arisen because we’re getting a lot of people who are really sick and need a dental checkup,” he explained.
“And then, of course, if they don’t get it they have no choice but to go into the emergency room, which is the most costly way to get treatment.”
The company said it will be looking to increase its number of dental visits, and will also be looking at how it can make “a dent in the cost of coverage for those with more severe conditions”.
“We will certainly do more,” Mr Bertolini said.
“There’s no doubt about that.”