Delta Dental offers financial aid to Iowa, Washington state dentists

Delta Dental member companies in Iowa and Washington state are offering dentists financial assistance amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a move applauded by the American Dental Association.

A Delta Dental of Washington program includes up to $10 million in grants to its members, with individual grants varying per tax identification number and reaching up to $15,000. Another program will advance 25 percent of average weekly payments of 2019 clinical reimbursements by practices' tax identification number. The total advances to one identification number will not exceed $25,000, and are to be repaid without interest in 20 weekly payments starting July 1.

Delta Dental of Iowa has established a program to provide dentists with 50 percent of their average weekly claim payments in advance for four weeks. A grant program is distributing up to $10,000 for agencies addressing food needs or providing health services.

"We urge third-party payers to consider grant programs, rather than advance payment programs," said Randall Markarian, DMD, ADA Council on Dental Benefit Programs chair.

Though advance reimbursement programs may help short-term cash flow, practices could face more financial hardship when repayments are due, Dr. Markarian said.

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