Dental Care in the Los Angeles Healthy Kids Program

Feb 3rd, 2012
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The Los Angeles Healthy Kids Program provides comprehensive health insurance, including dental coverage, to children in families with incomes below 300 percent of poverty who are ineligible for Medi-Cal and Healthy Families. This study draws upon results from qualitative and quantitative components of a five-year evaluation of the program, and presents new results from analysis of encounter data from SafeGuard Dental, the program’s dental plan.

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Dental Care in the Los Angeles Healthy Kids Program:Successes and ChallengesPrepared for:Prepared by:Sara HoganIan HillEmbry HowellThe Urban InstituteTHE URBAN INSTITUTEJuly 2009 ACKNOWLEDGMENTSWe would like to acknowledge the contributions of the personnel whose work in producing the dental encounter data made this report possible: Paula Lpez, Alan Stobaugh, and Negah Parsangi of SafeGuard Dental, and Sharon Lee-Chi of the L.A. Care Health Plan.In addition, we are grateful for the direction and support provided by our project officer at First 5 L.A., Christine Ong. EXECUTIVE SUMMARYThe Los Angeles Healthy Kids Program provides comprehensive health insurance, including dental coverage, to children in families with incomes below 300 percent of poverty who are ineligible for Medi-Cal and Healthy Families. This study draws upon results from qualitative and quantitative components of a five-year evaluation of the program, and presents new results from analysis of encounter data from SafeGuard Dental, the program's dental plan. Findings indicate that the Healthy Kids program has greatly improved coverage and access to dental care services for nearly 31,000 low-income, mostly immigrant, Latino children. Specifically, the program: -Improved access to dental care. An evaluation household survey conducted in 2005 and 2007 with parents of Healthy Kids enrollees ages 2 to 5 found that Healthy Kids enrollment is associated with a nearly 28 percentage point incre

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