Dental Plan Policy Document
The Penn Faculty Practice Dental Plan for Undergraduate and Graduate Students of the University of Pennsylvania
Effective August 1, 2013
The Penn Faculty Practice Dental Plan of the University of Pennsylvania (“Penn Dental Plan” or “Plan”) is a program of comprehensive dental benefits with the Penn Dental Faculty Practices, a group of oral health professionals affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine. You benefit from a team of experts who not only teach the next generation of dentists, but also practice using the latest techniques in patient care. All covered services are performed by members of Penn Dental Faculty Practices, who provide general and specialty treatment under one roof.
This document describes the benefits available under the Penn Dental Plan.
The Penn Dental Plan is open to undergraduate and graduate students (and their eligible dependents) of the University of Pennsylvania who satisfy the eligibility requirements as defined by Student Health Services and the Penn Dental Faculty Practice.
2. Enrollment in the Penn Dental Plan
Eligible undergraduate and graduate students may enroll either upon or during the annual open enrollment period. With the exception of certain mid-year election changes described in Section 2.2, eligible dependents may be added to coverage only at the time that the student enrolls or during an open enrollment period.
2.1 Effective Date of Coverage
The effective date of coverage for the Penn Dental Plan is August 1st, 2013.
2.2 Mid-Year Election Changes
Eligible undergraduate and graduate students are permitted to add or drop themselves and/or their eligible dependents from coverage under the Penn Dental Plan on account of certain major life events (such as birth, adoption, marriage, etc.), at the discretion of the Penn Dental Faculty Practice, provided that notice is given to the Penn Dental Faculty Practices within 30 days of the event. All premiums are non-refundable and not pro-rated.
3. Schedule of Benefits
The Penn Dental Plan provides the following coverage:
Type I Services: 100% Coverage
- Diagnostic and Preventive, including routine examinations and prophys/cleanings (limited to not more than two times in a 12 month period), radiographs, fluoride applications and sealants (for children up to age 14), and oral hygiene counseling.
Type II Services: 100% Coverage
- Basic restorations: Composites (tooth-colored restorations) for front teeth cavities are covered at the 100% rate. Composites for back teeth cavities are subject to an additional co-pay depending on the size of the restoration. Coverage is contingent upon radiographic evidence showing the need for the composite for non-cosmetic purposes.
- Oral surgery (out of hospital only) including extractions, incision and drainage of abscesses, alveolectomy, and alveoloplasty, removal of oral cysts and tumors, and other routine oral surgical procedures performed in the office. The aforementioned services shall be covered by the Penn Dental Plan only if such services are not covered by the subscriber’s medical coverage.
- Emergency treatment (palliative treatment for the relief of pain or discomfort). Other services performed during emergency treatment will be covered at their usual benefit levels.
Type III Services: 80% Coverage
- Periodontics: Surgical and non-surgical periodontics including subgingival curettage, scaling and root planning, periodontal maintenance.
- Endodontics, including pulp treatment, root canal therapy, pulpotomy, and apicoectomy.
Type IV Services: 50% coverage
- Major restorations: including inlays, crowns (when necessary due to decay or fracture), and bridges.
- Dentures, including complete upper and/or lower dentures, partial dentures, and relining and repair of dentures.
- Space maintainers—prosthetic devices used in children to maintain the gap created by a missing tooth until the permanent tooth emerges.
- Implants: surgery including restoration. Restorations on implants, including crowns and other prostheses, are covered at the usual level for that restoration. The implant abutment (post that is placed in the implant fixture and anchors the crown), bone graft, and any other biological materials are excluded from coverage. Only crowns that are placed on covered implants will be a covered benefit under the plan. Please refer to section 3.3 for limitations and exclusions. The annual maximum benefit for implant surgery is $1,000. This implant benefit will be applied to the annual maximum Plan benefit of $1,000.
- Occlusal Nightguards (processed in an outside laboratory or at Penn Dental Faculty Practices)
- CT Scans for diagnostic purposes for implants (when scanned at the Penn Dental Faculty Practice)
Please refer to the limitations and exclusions section.
Type V Services – 50% coverage
- Orthodontics: includes one orthodontic treatment per lifetime for children and adults. Indications for orthodontics are an overbite of at least four millimeters, a crossbite, or protrusive or retrusive relationship of at least one cusp. Transfer of subscribers under treatment will be subject to a monthly treatment fee, which will be covered at the 50% level. Subscribers in treatment when their Penn Dental Plan coverage is no longer in effect will have their orthodontic benefit prorated by the time remaining in treatment, subject to a $1,000 lifetime maximum benefit.
Invisalign: The Penn Dental Plan features a one-time benefit of either $1,000 (full case) or $500 (limited express case) for Invisalign (for patients who have a permanent dentition at time of consultation), which can be applied towards the lifetime orthodontic benefit of $1,000.
The lifetime orthodontic benefit counts towards the annual maximum Plan benefit of $1,000.
3.1 Copayments and Deductibles
For Type II, III, and IV services, there is a $50 Plan year August 1-July 31 deductible that applies. The maximum deductible per individual per year is $50. Copayments are dependent on the type of services provided and are due at the time of treatment. For specific copayments, contact your Penn Dental Faculty Plan office.
Emergency care is provided for subscribers of Penn Dental Faculty Practices on a 24-hour basis. If an emergency occurs outside of normal business hours, the subscriber should call (215) 898-4615 or any Penn Dental Faculty Practice office for a referral to the emergency provider on call.
3.2.1 Out-of-the-Area Emergency Care
In the event that an emergency occurs when the subscriber is more than 100 miles away from one of the Faculty Practices, palliative treatment (treatment to alleviate the immediate discomfort) from a non-plan dentist is covered by the Penn Dental Plan. Examples of emergencies are pain, fever, swelling, bleeding, or loss of a tooth.
Treatment from a non-plan dentist should be limited to palliative treatment. Follow-up care must be provided by Penn Dental Faculty Practices in order to be covered.
To receive reimbursement from the Penn Dental Plan for palliative treatment, the subscriber must submit an itemized bill with procedure codes and receipt of payment from the dentist who provided the emergency treatment. If x-rays were taken, they must also be included or forwarded electronically.
The subscriber is responsible for all out of pocket expenses incurred for the emergency care treatment. The subscriber shall receive reimbursement from the Penn Dental Plan for the palliative emergency services at a rate equal to the Penn Dental Faculty Practice fee for the same or similar service, subject to the Plan coverage and limitations. The subscriber is responsible for any fees charged by the dentist who provided emergency treatment that are in excess of those charged by Penn Dental Faculty Practices.
3.3 Limitations and Exclusions
The maximum annual benefit per plan year (August 1-July 31) for each individual is $1,000.
The Penn Dental Plan will NOT cover:
- An appliance, or modification of one, where an impression was made before the subscriber was covered.
- Root canal therapy if the pulp chamber was opened before the subscriber was covered.
- Full or partial denture at any stage of fabrication prior to coverage.
Other procedures not covered by the Penn Dental Plan include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Services, procedures, or supplies not provided by Penn Dental Faculty Practices, except for emergency services covered in Section 3.2.1.
- Services provided under any government program or law under which the individual is, or could be, covered as determined by the Penn Dental Plan Administrators.
- Coverage for a restoration (bridge, crown, removable denture or implant) of a tooth or teeth missing or extracted prior to enrollment in the Penn Dental Plan is subject to the approval of the Clinical Director and may be denied.
- Unserviceable appliances that meet all of the other criteria for replacement will be replaced by same-type appliances or an alternative benefit for enhanced prosthetic choices can be applied at the discretion of the Penn Dental Plan Administrator.
- Replacement or upgrade of a previous restoration (bridge, crown, removable denture of implant) that is less than 60 months old. If the restoration was not performed in one of the Penn Dental Faculty Practice offices, the subscriber is responsible for obtaining documentation of the restoration’s age.
- Occlusal appliances, other than for bruxism.
- Procedures necessary to alter the vertical dimension or to restore occlusion by splinting.
- Splinting teeth with permanent restorations (crowns) for periodontal purposes.
- Services necessitated by an accident related to employment or disease covered under the workers’ compensation or similar law.
- Abutments, bone grafts and biological materials, such as membranes, for dental implants (which must be paid for before delivery of such materials).
- Prosthetic superstructure over implants (crowns, bridges, attachments, dentures) if the implant itself was not covered under the Penn Dental Plan).
- Replacement of lost or broken orthodontic appliances.
- Oral surgery and related expenses in a hospital.
- Dentistry requiring hospitalization except preauthorized pediatric dentistry covered at Penn Dental Plan benefits.
- General anesthesia—Conscious (IV or Oral) sedation—for basic dentistry services (i.e. fillings, extractions, etc). For complex extractions, the Penn Dental Plan Office will submit to your medical carrier for coverage.
- Treatment of temporomandibular (TMJ) dysfunction. No TMJ appliances.
- Dentistry primarily for cosmetic purposes.
- A service provided while the subscriber’s coverage is not in effect, except as provided under Section 5.1.
- Nitrous oxide.
- Preventive sealants on adult dentition.
- Fluoride treatments for subscribers older than 14 years of age.
- Oraquix (needle-free anesthetic) tissue anesthesia and Arestin.
4. Cost of Coverage
Subscribers are expected to pay their share of the cost of services, if any, at the time of their visit. Arrangements can be made with the billing staff for individual payment plans through Care Credit, such as those for crown and bridge treatment and orthodontics.
5. Termination of Coverage
In general, coverage for the subscriber and eligible dependents will terminate if the subscriber ceases to be an eligible student of the University of Pennsylvania or if the Penn Dental Plan is discontinued by the University of Pennsylvania.
5.1 Extension of Benefits
If coverage under the Penn Dental Plan is terminated for the subscriber or a family member, the protection will be extended to cover treatment in progress or basic services received within the next 30 days provided that these services would have been covered had the Penn Dental Plan remained in effect. Payment for treatment received after this extension period will be on a fee-for-service basis.
6. Subscriber Responsibilities
Subscribers to the Penn Dental Plan are expected to:
- Seek all dental care from the Penn Dental Faculty Practices (this Plan is not accepted at the School of Dental Medicine).
- Pay deductibles and their co-payments for covered services at the time of the visit.
- Notify the Penn Dental Faculty Practice of any changes in status affecting covered dependents.
- Give at least 24 hours notice for cancellation of appointments. If a subscriber or his/her dependents fail to give advance notice (minimum 24 hours), a letter will be sent notifying the subscriber that future failed or broken appointments (less than 24 hours) will generate a fee. This fee will increase with future failed or broken appointments. Subscribers must pay all failed or broken appointment fees before scheduling future appointments for dental treatment.
- Notify their provider at their next appointment of any changes in medical history, including medications.
- Be present for the entire visit when a minor child is having dental treatment and sign a treatment plan for the child.
- Be on time for all appointments.
- Maintain good dental health habits.
7. Changes in Family Status
Notify the Penn Dental Faculty Practice of any changes in family status affecting covered dependents.
8. Coordination with Other Plans
The Penn Dental Plan contains a provision that coordinates the benefits it pays on behalf of an individual with payments that may be made under other plans covering the individual so that the total benefits available will not exceed 100% of the allowable expenses.
An allowable expense is any necessary, reasonable, and customary expenses covered, at least in part, by one of the “plans.” For this purpose, the terms “plans” refer to the following types of medical and dental care benefit programs: (a) coverage under a government program or coverage required by statute, including no-fault coverage to the extent required in policies or contracts by a motor vehicle insurance statute or similar legislation; and (b) group insurance through employment or other coverage obtained through an educational institution above the high school level.
When a claim is made, the primary plan pays its benefits without regard to any other plans. The secondary plans adjust their benefits so that the total benefits available will not exceed the allowable expenses. The Penn Dental Plan will not pay more than it would have paid if there were no other plan. A plan without a coordination provision is always the primary plan. If all plans have a coordination provision, the plan covering the subscriber directly, rather than as a dependent, is the primary plan. If both parents cover a dependent child, except for situations where the parents are separated or divorced, the plan of the parent whose date of birth (month, day) falls earlier in the calendar year is the primary plan for that child. If both parents have the same birth date, the plan that covered the parent longer shall be primary.
9. Statement of Rights of Student Health Services
As with any other coverage option, Student Health Services reserves the right to amend or terminate the Penn Dental Plan, in whole or in part, at any time.
10. Resolution of Questions Regarding Services and Billing
If a subscriber believes that he/she has not been provided with sufficient information about the Penn Dental Plan or has been denied a benefit under the Penn Dental Plan, the subscriber may file a written claim with:
Penn Dental Center at University City
3401 Market St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104
11. Miscellaneous Information
Erika N. Gross
Director, Finance, Administration and Risk Management
Student Health Services
3535 Market Street, Suite 100
215-746-0821 - direct
The Plan year begins each August 1st and ends July 31st. Premiums paid by the subscriber for the Plan year are non-refundable.