This is a guest post by Ron who is one of the foremost Hawkesbury dentists who has 10 years of experience in dentistry.
In Canada there is universal access to healthcare in general but it is still lacking when it comes to dental care. This is because dental care is not covered as part of the nation’s universal healthcare benefits and if you want dental care you would need to purchase additional dental insurance from a provider that offers it.
In addition, some of the dental care providers in Canada do not offer coverage for more complex dental procedures but rather they focus on preventative care and regular exams. This is a disservice to Canadian families who need certain procedures but they will have to pay out of pocket, which is usually hundreds or thousands of dollars. As a result debt from dental bills rises among these families. However, there are some improvements that can be made.
Children Need Better Access to Dental Care
According to a recent article on Marketwire.com, the Canadian Pediatric Society says that not enough children of various socioeconomic backgrounds are receiving quality dental care and it shows through the latest statistics on Canadian children’s oral health. Close to 57% children in Canada ages 6 to 11 had at least one or more cavities and tooth removal is the most common procedure for children nowadays in Canada. In addition, struggling families end up putting themselves in more debt to pay for the dental procedures because they lack proper access to good dental insurance. This is one reason why dental care should be included in the overall universal health care system in Canada.
Increase Free Dental Care for Canada’s Low-Income Residents
Another way to improve the Canadian dental care system is to establish more free dental clinics for the country’s poorer residents. This is what a private donor did when he gave funds to build a free dental clinic called Mustard Seed for the purpose of helping struggling families in the Calgary area. If more of these clinics were built all over Canada, there would be more equality in the dental care system in Canada.
Insurance Providers Need to Offer Broader Coverage of Procedures
Even families who have dental insurance sometimes go into debt for dental procedures because their insurance providers do not cover certain procedures. This can be changed by the government mandating that all dental insurance providers in Canada offer a set of dental procedures that they must provide coverage for so that families can afford the care they need if they have insurance. No family should still have to pay out of pocket just because their insurance providers do not pay for certain treatments or prescriptions.
While people currently benefit from Canada’s universal healthcare overall, there are still some flaws and a lack of proper access to dental care is an example of this. The Canadian government needs to work together with the healthcare industry leaders to determine methods of providing better access to dental care to all Canadian citizens.