GSLDS Newsroom

ADA: Contact Congress to improve adult access to Medicaid dental benefits

ADA also asks Congress to reduce administrative burdens for Medicaid dentists


The ADA sent out an action alert April 25 asking members to request Congress’s support of efforts to improve adult access to Medicaid dental benefits.

Members of the House of Representatives are being asked to cosponsor HR 1342, the Medicaid Dental Benefit Act of 2023, and HR 1422, the Strengthening Medicaid Incentives for Licensees Enrolled in Dental (SMILED) Act. HR 1342 would make comprehensive dental care a mandatory component of Medicaid coverage for adults in every state, and HR 1422 would reduce the administrative burdens for dentists in Medicaid, including audits and credentialing.

Senators are being asked to cosponsor S 570, the Medicaid Dental Benefit Act of 2023.

Only about half of states provide comprehensive adult dental coverage to their Medicaid enrollees, according to the alert.

“As you know, oral health is essential to overall health and well-being,” according to the alert, signed by Mike Graham, ADA senior vice president, Government and Public Affairs. “However, many adults who use Medicaid benefits find that there is little, if any, coverage for dental care, and they are unable to afford basic dental care on their own. Without a federal requirement, and given the competing priorities for state budgets, the optional adult dental benefit is often not provided by states or is very limited.”