Health Policy

Dentist Participation in Medicaid

Reynolds, J.C.; Naavaal, S.
03/2021

Abstract

Medicaid is a federal insurance program that provides health coverage to low-income children, adults, pregnant women, elderly adults, and individuals with disabilities. As of February 2020, 64 million individuals were enrolled in Medicaid nationwide, equivalent to approximately one-fifth of the U.S. population. The Medicaid program is administered at the state level and is funded jointly by states and the federal government. For Medicaid-enrolled children, dental benefits are federally mandated, but for adults they are elective. As a result, dental coverage for adult beneficiaries varies state to state, ranging from comprehensive dental benefits to none at all. As of September 2019, only 19 states provided comprehensive dental benefits to adult beneficiaries.