I think I'm going to become a patient's rights advocate. Recently my sister was torn, trying to decide how to take care of her daughter's dental problem. The poor girl was in major pain, it happened to be a Sunday and they have no dental insurance. My sister took her to an urgent care center. One little problem with this type of facility--they don't do teeth. The best they could do was give her pain medication and advise her to see a dentist. And that will be $65.00 for this visit.
So what do people do about their dental problems when they have no dental insurance and no extra money to pay a dentist bill?
What boggles my mind is the fact that you can go to a hospital if you have a medical emergency, and as far as I know, you can't be turned away if you have no insurance. They'll take care of you, treat your ailment, and then send you a bill and how you pay that bill--well, that's to be determined down the road.
But what about a dental emergency? The way I look at it is simple. Everybody has teeth. At some point, every person will need to see a dentist. Sure, we're told to see a dentist twice a year for check-ups and cleanings, but if you don't and develop a cavity, need root canal, etc., then what?
Not everyone will have a medical emergency, not everyone will visit a doctor, not everyone will need to take advantage of their health insurance, if they have it, but most everyone will need to visit a dentist.
So the way I see it we need a radical new plan. We need emergency dental care facilities that are open every day, even on weekends. And some provisions for those who can't afford a hefty dental bill. No one should be turned away because they can't come up with the money at the time of service.