Your Task Today: Call Your Senator To Restore Oral Health Fillings

Oral Health Advocacy Task ForceThe Senate budget released yesterday is a mix of good and disappointing, of course. We’ll have a more detailed report, with all of our amendment recommendations, early next week.

But for now we want to focus on the most glaring problem with the budget – no funds for dental fillings for some 800,00 low-income adults on MassHealth, including 120,000 seniors and 180,000 people with disabilities.

Now, dentists can identify cavities during an examination, but with the exception of a small number of billing codes, fillings are not covered.  Left untreated, a simple cavity can lead to serious medical problems.

The House budget included funds to cover fillings, starting on January 1, 2014. But the Senate did not follow their lead.

Senator Harriette Chandler is filing an amendment to add funds to cover the $18 million cost of adding fillings to the MassHealth dental benefit. The deadline for other Senators to cosponsor her amendment is tomorrow (Friday) at noon.

That’s where you come in.  We need as many Senators as possible to co-sponsor her amendment. Here’s an action alert from our Oral Health Advocacy Task Force:

Five Minutes Can Make a Big Difference!

 

Calling your Senator is easy and effective – here’s how:

  • Call and ask to speak with your Senator. It is also okay to speak with an aide.
  • Tell them your name and that you live in the Senator’s district.  They may ask for your address.
  • Say that you are calling to strongly urge them to cosponsor Senator Chandlers amendment to restore fillings to the MassHealth adult dental benefit.
  • Let them know the amendment would go into effect on January 1, 2014 and would cost $18 million.
  • Ask them if they will commit to signing on to Senator Chandler’s amendment, restoring medically necessary health care services for more than 800,000 individuals in Massachusetts.
  • Thank them for their time.

Thank you for taking the time to make your calls this afternoon!

Please contact Courtney Chello at 617-275-2935 or cchelo@hcfama.org and let us know how it went. The more we know about who has committed to sign on, the better we can target our efforts.

 

(Not sure who your Senator is? Click here to find out.)

 

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