On the surface, you’d expect dentists to be fond of the Democratic proposal to expand Medicare to include dental (along with vision and hearing) coverage. It’s one of the things progressives are battling to include in the fiscal year 2022 budget reconciliation bill, a.k.a. the Build Back Better package, assuming Democratic centrists don’t shrink the price tag so much that big Medicare improvements become unaffordable. So the medical professionals who care about good teeth and gums and would get the actual Medicare dollars must be big fans, right? Wrong, as the Wall Street Journalreports:
The American Dental Association is mobilizing its 162,000 members to fight a proposal to include dental coverage for all Medicare recipients, opposition that could prove pivotal as Democrats look to make cuts in their $3.5 trillion domestic policy agenda.
Giving dental, vision and hearing benefits to the 60 million older and disabled Americans covered by Medicare will provide needed care to people who otherwise might not afford it, supporters say.