By Debbie Gregory.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has made arrangements to make dental insurance available to Veterans at an affordable price. Starting November 15th, the VA launched a partnership with Delta Dental and MetLife, called the VA Dental Insurance Plan (VADIP). The VADIP allows Veterans and dependents who are receiving medical care under the Civilian Health and Medical Program (CHAMPVA) to purchase dental insurance. CHAMPVA participants are usually dependents or survivors of Veterans with a VA rating of “permanently and totally” disabled through a service-connected condition.
There are currently more than 8 million Veterans and 400,000 dependents enrolled in VA healthcare. This new program is designed for those Veterans with no dental coverage, or for Veterans who are eligible for VA dental care. Veterans who meet the criteria can now choose to pay for dental insurance. Enrollment in VADIP is not mandatory and participation in the new program is not supposed to affect entitlement to VA dental care, services and treatments.
The VA’s new dental insurance provides Veterans with dental services that include diagnostic, preventive, surgical, emergency and endodontic/restorative treatments. Those who participate in VADIP are responsible for the premiums, ranging from $8.65 to $52.90 per month, depending on the plan. Copayments and other charges also may apply.
The new dental insurance is not linked to priority assignment or rating of service-connected disability. The VA will also continue to provide free dental care to Veterans with dental issues derived from a officially certified service-connected ailments.
Veterans who are not currently enrolled in the VA health care system can apply at any time by visiting the VA’s enrollment webpage or by calling 1-877-222-VETS (8387).