United Concordia to offer expanded dental benefit to those with heart disease
Highmark Inc.'s dental subsidiary United Concordia will make a richer dental benefit available to members with heart disease and those who have suffered a stroke, the company said.
The benefit, which pays 100 percent of the cost of periodontal surgery needed to treat gum disease, is being offered to company health plans after a study commissioned by the dental company found that good oral health can reduce overall health care spending.
“Treating chronic health conditions like heart disease and stroke comes with a very high health care cost,” said James Bramsom, United Concordia's chief dental officer. “Dental disease is preventable or treatable at a much lower cost and the beneficial effects through reduced health care costs are significant.”
The study, which reviewed patient claims data, found patients with heart disease who received treatment for gum disease had yearly medical bills that were $2,956 lower than similar patients who did not receive treatment for gum disease. Stroke patients had annual medical costs that were $1,029 lower when they were treated for gum disease.
United Concordia last year said that similar studies found lower overall medical costs for diabetic patients who received treatment for gum disease.
The studies, conducted by Dr. Marjorie Jeffcoat, are expected to be published in a peer-reviewed journal later this year.
Alex Nixon is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7928 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Add Alex Nixon to your Google+ circles.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Kings Family Restaurants sold to California firm
- Mylan raises bid for fellow drugmaker; Perrigo says ‘no’
- What price safety? Cost of crash prevention is roadblock
- Airlines’ bottom lines soar on cheaper fuel
- Comcast abandons Time Warner Cable merger deal amid regulators’ pushback
- Tech sector drives gains on Wall Street
- Guessing approach can result in big bill
- Lexus sport coupe has youthful appeal, power
- Acura ILX strikes balance
- Pittsburgh union serving TV, film production looking for lots of help
- DeVry shift to online classes prompts closing of Pittsburgh campus