Insurance Plans That Offer Combined Eye & Dental Care
- Some insurance programs offer both dental and vision benefits.Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images
Health insurance is a major concern for many families. Premiums can be high, even if you are just paying for one person. Some employees can get group health insurance through their employers, but others cannot. Even if you are able to afford health insurance, a large number of plans do not offer benefits for dental care and vision, forcing families to buy additional insurance. You can save money by purchasing a plan that combines dental and vision coverage, if these kinds of plans are available in your state.
- Perhaps the most prominent combined vision and dental plan in the United States is SafeGuard, a part of MetLife Insurance. As of 2010, this is only in Texas, Florida and California. SafeGuard is a dental health management organization (HMO) plan, where customers get their services exclusively from providers who participate in the SafeGuard network. There are no waiting periods, claim forms or deductibles with SafeGuard, which covers more than 245 dental procedures as well as including benefits for vision exams and discounted lenses, contacts and frames. SafeGuard comes in two basic plans, the Classic Choice and the Premier Choice. The Premier Choice has the lowest co-payments, but the Classic Choice is available at lower premiums. Both plans also include coverage for LASIK surgery, preventive dental services and diagnostic treatment.
- Vital Savings is a dental discount plan offered by Aetna. Technically, Vital Savings is not insurance, but allows customers access to dental services at discounted fees. Once you buy Vital Savings, you must go to providers that participate with the program. However, there are no limits on how much you can use it or how often you can see your providers. In 2010, signing up for the program cost a one-time fee of $15 and a monthly payment of $7.99 for individuals and $10.99 for families. You can also choose to pay annually, $75 per year for single persons and $105 for families. The Aetna Vision discount plan comes for no additional charge as part of Vital Savings. Aetna Vision features discounts on Lasik, eye exams, contact lenses, solutions and glasses, and you can use it at several national optical firms. It is not available in Montana or Vermont.
- If you qualify for Medicare, you may be able to get combined vision and dental coverage through a Medicare advantage plan. Traditional Part A Medicare only covers inpatient hospital services, and Medicare Part B adds some preventive services, such as doctor's visits. Neither, however, covers eye or dental care. Private insurance companies offer Medicare advantage plans, which may include vision and dental care. Medicare advantage comes in various forms, including HMO plans, preferred provider organization (PPO) plans, special needs plans and private fee-for-service plans. The costs and the exact benefits offered can vary greatly depending on the insurance company and the state where you live.