Broker blog from Delta Dental

Tag: Individual dental coverage

Updated individual plan materials now available

Are your individual plan materials feeling stale? There’s no better way to freshen up your sales pitch than with new and improved marketing materials. Delta Dental has updated individual and family plan booklets and brochures to help you sell!

These updates include:

  • Plan information for new and renewing individual enrollees with effective dates of 8/1/2022 or after
  • Booklets for you to share with clients that consolidate Delta Dental PPO™ and DeltaCare® USA plan information into one document for each state
  • Regional booklets with information on benefits like limitations and exclusions and resources for you
  • A modern look and feel to align with other Delta Dental materials

Please note that these brochures and booklets are only for individual plans. Materials for New York and Washington, D.C. will be available soon.

Have questions?

Our broker services team is here for you:

Big changes coming for PPO individual plans

Prospective clients have a few more reasons to choose Delta Dental PPO™ plans, thanks to some new improvements that will soon be available.

D&P deductible waiver

Starting with an August 1 effective date, there will be no deductible required for diagnostic and preventive services on both the Basic and Premium plans for new and renewing members. That includes cleanings, exams and x‑rays. What’s even more important is that your clients will have access to the savings immediately when their plan starts and won’t have to pay out of pocket for these services.

“We’re taking down the barriers to getting diagnostic and preventive services that are so important,” said Brandy Petricka, individual channel manager for Delta Dental.

This change is not retroactive but will be available to new members who choose an effective date after August 1. These changes will apply to current members after their new plan year renews.

Increased maximums

The Premium PPO plan now has an increased annual maximum. The Premium maximum is increasing to $2,000 from $1,500, which means they can get more services covered every year.

Improved plan at the same price

Finally, at a time when prices are skyrocketing on almost every item and service, Delta Dental’s rates for the PPO plans are staying the same. Clients won’t have to pay any more for their benefits for the coming year.

The changes make Delta Dental’s plans even more competitive and comprehensive, expanding services while keeping prices the same. This will make it easier for you to sell plans to your individual clients, especially those who seeking preventive services.

Sell individual plans with resources from Delta Dental

Selling individual plans is different from selling to groups, and helping individual clients navigate all their choices can be challenging. Whether you’re already selling individual plans or just getting started, Delta Dental is here to help you match the perfect plan to every client. Our resources keep you equipped with all the tools you need.

Broker resources

Start with our broker resources page, your one-stop hub for selling individual and family plans. Here you’ll find details on the plans we offer, webinars to keep you up to date with selling tips, information about value-added features and more.

Details on the plans we offer

Know which plans are offered in which states and help clients navigate their options to find the plan that best suits their needs:

  • For clients on a budget, our DHMO-style plan, DeltaCare® USA, is a great way to stay covered with predictable copayments.
  • Our Delta Dental PPO™ plans can help clients who want to keep their current dentist or value flexibility.

Easy-to-use brochures, organized by state, explain all the options available to your clients with each plan, and short videos likewise offer quick and accessible outlines of the PPO and DeltaCare USA plans.

Value-added features

Let your clients know that Delta Dental plans offer great perks. All of our plans come with the additional benefits of special discount programs on hearing aids and LASIK eye surgery from Amplifon and QualSight,  and savings on dental hygiene products through BrushSmart™. What’s more, Delta Dental PPO members are eligible for Delta Dental’s virtual dentistry programs, Toothpic and Delta Dental – Virtual Consult.

Your broker link

Your unique broker link connects your clients to our instant individual quoting and enrollment flow, automatically crediting you for sales when they enroll online. Share it with your clients on brochures, emails, websites and the rest of your marketing materials.

To find your individual plan broker link link, log in to your online account. Select the Business Information tab. You’ll find your link under the Links tab.

Webinars

Find success selling individual plans with this free series of 30-minute webinars. The webinars are available on demand, and topics include:

  • Individual broker resources. Learn about the support and sales resources available to you, where to find answers to benefit questions, how to get appointed, how to navigate the broker portal and more.
  • Plans overview. Learn the details of the plans we offer and get familiar with the plan perks and features that your individual clients are seeking now.
  • Member resources. Take a tour of Delta Dental’s member resources and learn all the best ways to help guide your clients through online purchasing. Learn to navigate the online directory and other support resources for members.

Resources for individual members, language support and more

Navigating benefits can feel especially overwhelming for individual clients, but our member resources keep things clear and simple. You can assure clients they’ll always be able to access information about their plan through our website and easy-to-use member portal.

Individual members simply log in to find:

  • Plan information
  • ID cards
  • Dentist directory to locate in-network dentists by ZIP code, languages spoken, ratings and more

Also on our website, they can find:

  • Information about accessing virtual dentistry
  • Wellness articles, videos, recipes and more

Delta Dental also offers customer support in over 170 languages, including interpretive services and document translation. Customers can also shop for plans, find a dentist and browse our wellness library on the Spanish website

Delta Dental is here for brokers

Still have questions? Our broker services team is here for you:

And of course, don’t forget to keep visiting the Insider Update blog for the latest Delta Dental broker news. Subscribe for email notifications to keep up to date with new posts about the latest industry tips and trends.


Selling dental insurance to young adults

The pandemic has been difficult for young adults. More than half of 18- to 29-year-olds are living with their parents, which is the most since the Great Depression, according to a recent Pew Research analysis. Millennials and Gen Z employees lost their jobs first when the pandemic hit and moved in with their parents to save money and get health care coverage.

But time is running out for them. Many fall off their parents’ dental coverage at age 26. This creates an opportunity for you to sign up young adults for individual coverage. How do you do this? Let’s take a closer look.

Why young adults lack dental coverage

The Affordable Care Act requires plans that have dependent child coverage to extend it until an adult child reaches the age of 26, even if the child is a student or has moved out, gotten married or had a child. Adult children on their parents’ Marketplace plan can generally remain covered through December 31 of the year they turn 26.

But they’re not seeking other insurance after this occurs. After 26, there’s a drop-off in dental coverage for young adults. In 2021, Delta Dental claims decreased about 20% after age 26, which is the largest year-to-year drop by age.

Why is this?

  • Many young people lack employer-sponsored dental coverage. Almost one in every four workers ages 20 to 34 wasn’t working in 2020, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Those who are working may pick up health insurance from their employer, but only 40% of employees received dental benefits from private employers in March 2021, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Young people may not consider their dental health. Young adults have a tendency to feel invincible, and this feeling overrides any dental health concerns they may have. They’re not thinking about the long-term effects of poor oral health when they are going out on a night with friends, having a latte, or buying a new gadget or expensive vacation.

Selling strategies

To sell to Gen Z and millennials, you need to focus on the immediate benefits of dental insurance. Delta Dental PPO™ plans cover 100% of diagnostic and preventive services, so all members need to do is make an appointment and show up. Two exams a year, coupled with x‑rays and professional cleanings, can pay for their premiums.

Second, make buying easy. Convenience is big for young people. Since they’re used to buying services and products on a smartphone or tablet, make sure you have an online presence with an easy way to compare and purchase plans. And remember to include your unique broker link on your marketing materials.

Finally, stress the long-term impact of dental insurance on their wallet. If left untreated, a cavity can progress to the point where a patient may need a root canal, crown or even an implant. Uninsured patients can pay an average of $2,600 out of pocket on these procedures, according to data for 2021. That’s compared with only about $550 out of pocket for patients with Delta Dental PPO. These figures are for illustrative purposes only, but they show the ultimate savings that dental insurance provides.

Delta Dental offers options 

So, what plan should they buy?

Young adults who are coming off their parents’ plan may want to keep their family dentist. In this case, the Delta Dental PPO plan, which lets them go to any dentist, would be ideal for prospective buyers. They can choose between the Basic Plan and the Premium Plan, depending on their budget and needs.

If young people are concerned about money, DeltaCare® USA, a DHMO-type plan may be a good fit. This plan has no deductibles or plan maximums, and it’s easy to see what services are covered. This makes it easy to understand for consumers unfamiliar with dental insurance. Members have to choose an in-network dentist, but they pay a fixed copayment for covered procedures, so it’s easy to budget for dental expenses.

Delta Dental members also have access to perks such as:

You can also use our broker resources for selling, including brochures, videos and on-demand webinars with tips on selling individual plans.

You may not be selling a new device or a thrilling vacation to young adults, but if you keep the focus on what they’ll get in the immediate future as well as down the road, they may think twice before buying that latte next time and set aside some money for their dental premium.


Dental implants are an important benefit

Dental implants are a popular option to replace missing teeth, and the market continues to grow by the day. Here’s a closer look at how fast the market for implants is growing and what kind of coverage Delta Dental offers.

What are implants?

Implants are artificial tooth roots inserted into the bone of the jaw or skull to provide a permanent base for fixed, replacement teeth. Archeologists have found rudimentary implants — tooth-like pieces of bamboo, shells and metal lodged into human jawbones — some dating as far back as 4,000 years ago. Modern dental implants have come a long way since then, particularly since the 1957 discovery that incorporating titanium allows an implant to fuse with bone.

An illustration shows the structure of a dental implant being placed in a jaw.

Why are implants such a popular choice?

Missing teeth are a common problem. The majority of adults ages 35 to 44 have lost at least one permanent tooth, and by age 74 more than a quarter of adults have lost all their permanent teeth.

About 3 million people in the U.S. have dental implants, and another 500,000 implants are placed each year, according to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry.

Implants are an appealing option because they closely resemble real teeth. They’re also permanent and comfortable, and they slow down the bone loss associated with losing a tooth. Unlike traditional dentures, implants aren’t removed for overnight soaking or cleaning, and they don’t require adhesives or anchoring to healthy teeth. Dental implant placement has a 95% success rate with minimal risks or associated complications.

Implant trends

One of the strongest factors affecting growth in the implant industry is the aging demographic in the United States. The Census Bureau estimates that by 2030, people aged 65 and older will outnumber those aged 18 and under. Since tooth loss is more prevalent in older populations, demand for implants is increasing.

An increasing number of dentists have therefore begun integrating dental implant procedures into their practices. A recent market study showed that around 31% of all dental implants placed in 2020 were done by general practitioners rather than specialists, a significant increase from the days when primarily specialists performed implant procedures and a rate which is expected to grow steadily over the coming years.

The growth of group practices and dental service organizations is also expected to drive the cost of implants down and the popularity up, since group practices can make the procedures more affordable and accessible for their patients. Overall, despite the recent slowdown caused by COVID-19, the US market for implants is expected to grow to exceed $1.5 billion in 2027.

What kind of implant coverage does Delta Dental offer?

Implants are an attractive option, but they can be an expensive one for patients. Costs vary, but implants can cost up to $3,000 to $5,000 per implant. It’s one of the reasons enrollees value implant coverage so highly.

Delta Dental offers implant coverage for both groups and individuals:

  • Group-sponsored Delta Dental PPO™ plans vary and may include implant coverage.
  • Groups with DeltaCare® USA coverage can choose the i‑series plans for comprehensive implant coverage.
  • For individuals, the Delta Dental PPO Premium Plan covers implants at 50%, after a 12-month waiting period.

Your clients will feel confident knowing that Delta Dental implant coverage was named Best Overall Dental Insurance for Implants for 2022 by Investopedia.

Covered benefits typically include implants, abutments, implant crowns, retainers (either abutment-supported or implant-supported), removal of implant, maintenance procedures, recement and repairs. Parts of an implant may be covered under prosthodontic coverage, such as the crown, bridge or denture supported by the dental implant itself. Some plans may include waiting periods, maximums and deductibles for implants, and not all plans cover pre-existing conditions such as missing teeth.

Since the many cost factors, such as consultations, x‑rays and anesthesia, may be confusing for members, Delta Dental provides a pre-treatment estimate that details what’s covered. Encourage members to ask their dentist to request a pre-treatment estimate from Delta Dental.

The demand for implants continues to grow every day. In this competitive job market, offering coverage can make all the difference in giving your clients the edge to attract top talent, and it’s also a benefit that individuals seek out and value when selecting a dental plan. With Delta Dental, your clients can find affordable, highly rated implant coverage.

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