The global health insurance market is set to experience unprecedented growth over the next few years, nearly doubling in value by 2027. But the industry isn’t just increasing in size, it is also undergoing a deep transformation necessary to meet the changing needs of consumers.
Here are some of the trends that are set to reshape the dental insurance industry in 2022 and beyond.
U.S. Companies are Digitizing Access to Insurance Schemes
Technology is profoundly transforming every industry, and the dental insurance market isn’t an exception. Thanks to innovative tools, US companies are responding to the needs of modern consumers by providing dental insurance plans that are tailored to the consumer’s financial needs, immediately accessible online, and more transparent.
For example, dental insurance marketplaces like Dentalinsurance.com allow consumers to compare different insurance plans, find providers with a reliable network, and choose a coverage that works for their specific needs.
The Expansion of Medicare is Increasing Dental Health Coverage Across the US
The introduction of Obamacare – or the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – has helped millions of people across the US benefit from essential healthcare coverage. But, according to recent studies, the ACA has also increased the rates of dental coverage by nearly 19% by expanding what is included in Medicaid.
At the same time, Medicare beneficiaries who take advantage of dental coverage are still facing out-of-pocket expenses as steep as $1000, and their dental plans don’t generally cover important aspects of oral health, including preventive care.
Given these statistics and the rising costs of individual dental insurance, the market is moving towards making policies more widely accessible and affordable for consumers of all incomes or ages.
In particular, the focus is placed on elderly Medicare beneficiaries who lose their comprehensive cover once they enter retirement or can no longer take advantage of employer-sponsored insurance.
AI and Data Will Power The Future of Dental Insurance
While the dental coverage market is moving slowly compared to medical insurance, the insurance market as a whole is being transformed by the adoption of InsurTech tools. These tools allow insurers to evaluate the risk of each policyholder based on historical data, daily habits, and factors like age and existing medical conditions.
Data-driven and AI-powered dental insurance policies are crucial to help insurance providers reduce overhead costs and, in turn, make policies more tailored and accessible for consumers.
A Renewed Focus on Preventive Care
In the US, a growing percentage of adults over 65 suffer from conditions like tooth loss, tooth decay, or gum disease. While these health problems can affect all aspects of life and turn into long-term issues, they can be prevented through routine checks and preventive care.
To reduce the burden of dental care, insurance providers are likely to shift their focus toward making preventive dentistry more accessible.
Some possible options include:
- Expanding the reach of Medicare to include preventive care and regular checks
- Making individual and comprehensive insurance policies more affordable, especially for at-risk groups like elderly people and children
- Encouraging patients to use wearable devices to instill healthy habits and reduce the need for emergency care
Comprehensive Healthcare Insurance Plans Will Include Dental Cover
Historically, the dental insurance market has been a separate branch of the wider health insurance market. Possible reasons for this split include the fact that dentistry and medicine are considered very different fields, treatment costs are assessed differently, and dental issues are commonly not life-threatening and don’t require immediate care.
However, as it becomes evident that oral health, physical well-being, and mental wellness are interconnected, both healthcare providers and insurers have started to embrace a more holistic approach. In the future, the two markets are expected to cooperate to offer consumers comprehensive policies that meet their medical, dental, and financial needs.
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