In recent years, dental has been added to more and more health plans as an ancillary benefit. This has been a dramatic shift in the industry that was previously dominated by stand-alone dental insurance providers, but these trends in dental insurance and care could be dangerous for them.
The Trends In Dental Insurance And Care
In 2018 and before the dental insurance market was around 97% controlled by stand-alone dental insurance providers. The estimate is that by 2025 that number will go down to around 85%. This trend is coming with a general change in the health industry of more streamlined and affordable options rather than pay for service models. More employers are also sponsoring dental insurance plans and bundling it into the already existing group health plans is a convenient way to provide this benefit.
Another of the trends popping up in the dental insurance and care world is that people are going to dentists noticeably less. Only around 37% of adults in the United States visited a dentist’s office in 2019, but that number is likely to dramatically increase as more people become insured through their health providers or companies.
What Can Dental Providers Do To Keep Up?
This trend is not a great sign for traditional stand-alone dental insurance companies, however, there are opportunities for them to adapt and thrive in this new environment. One of the things that are possible is that many of these dental providers could partner with traditional health insurance companies to still be able to offer their services after this shift. Another method that a stand-alone dental company could use is providing superior service or technology to streamline their dental insurance products. This would present a choice for consumers between the convenience of the medical plan dental insurance or the superior service of the stand-alone providers. However, as of right now most providers have stated that they are leaning towards the partnership route instead.
Dental Care & Insurance Going Forward
With these trends in the industry, the future of dental insurance and dental care looks much better for consumers. The competition rising will lead to better coverage and better value for consumers.