Aetna Dental Review

4.5/5

Since 1853 Aetna has been offering insurance and from 1899, they have been offering health insurance. Aetna is a well-known provider of dental plans and is now a subsidiary of CVS Health Corporation.

Aetna looks to provide benefits, products and services to its consumers with a network of over 339,000 dentists.

Background on Aetna Dental

Aetna Dental provides cover for over 14 million members as well as providing Medicare supplement insurance. The Medicare supplement insurance includes dental care not usually afforded with Medicare.

When considering how they approach the people they serve, Aetna’s governance is based on integrity, excellence, caring and inspiration. From there, Aetna believes there are three enticing reasons for why they are the provider for you:

  • Simplicity – The transparency of their services makes it easier for you to consider costs.
  • Focus – Affordable care is the aim and Aetna are looking to help you save money.
  • Connection – Excellent up-to-date technology and service teams means you can find the information you require.

A state-of-the-art app

Aetna have the Attain by Aetna app. Through its partnership with Apple you can combine your Apple Watch with your health history and have an even more personal experience by setting goals and actions as well as having rewards.

How do you use the plan?

Once you have signed up to an Aetna Dental plan (activation typically occurs within 72 hours of it being purchased), all you need to do is show your plan at the start of the appointment and then all you will do is pay the new price (courtesy of your plan) at the time of the visit.

The plans provide reduced rates (savings from 15% – 50%) for members for various dental procedures according to the plan you are signed up to. There are also no waiting periods involved.

The types of plans offered by Aetna Dental

You can break down what Aetna Dental offer in to three plans, the Dental Maintenance Organization plan, the Preferred Provider Organization plan and the Dental Indemnity plan. Each are unique with their own benefits and features.

Dental Maintenance Organization (DMO)

Through choosing a Primary Care Dentist (once chosen, you cannot change for a year and this repeats every year), users of the DMO plan can secure a low-cost, affordable dental plan. However, if you decide that you need to see a specialist, this will require a referral, but with choosing a DMO plan, you are not subject to either deductibles or an annual maximum.

Preferred Provider Organization (PPO)

Whereas with the DMO you are restricted in some cases requiring a referral, with a PPO plan you can visit any dentist and no referral is required. Bear in mind however that it is understandably cheaper to use an in-network dentist but with a PPO plan you may be able to secure some coverage of your bill if you choose to use an out-of-network dentist. Unlike a DMO plan, you are subject to both deductibles and annual maximums.

Dental Indemnity

With this choice you are presented with the freedom of being able to use any licensed dentist without having to commit to one as your primary. If you do decide to switch dentist, you are able to do so without losing your dental coverage. No referrals are required when using this plan, but you are subject to both deductibles and annual maximums. It is considered that the Dental Indemnity plan provides the highest level of coverage.

Picking the right plan

Choosing the right plan for you depends on your circumstances, including how often you may require dental work and the type of work required. See below three Aetna Dental plans varying in coverage and cost to see which may be right for you:

Aetna Dental Access

  • Individual Plan – $13.95 per month or $124.95 per year
  • Family Plan – $19.95 per month or $179.95 per year

Save from 15% – 50% on most dental procedures.

Aetna Vital Dental Savings

  • Individual Plan – $15.95 per month or $139.95 per year
  • Family Plan – $20.95 per month or $189.95

Save from 15% – 50% on dental services such as preventative care and orthodontal services as well as making savings on specialist dental care, for example oral surgeons and paediatric dentists. You are also entitled to savings on vision, such as sunglasses, contact lenses and LASIK.

Aetna Vital Savings Plus RX

  • Individual Plan – $16.95 per month or $154.95 per year
  • Family Plan – $21.95 per month or $199.95 per year

You can access numerous savings, from 15% – 50% on a vast range of dental services to 10% – 40% on prescription drugs as well as savings on the area of vision and up to 40% on the cost of hearing services.

The case for using Aetna Dental

Besides the long history of service provided by Aetna Dental, there are also other compelling reasons for why 14 million members have used their service:

  • Large network of over 339,000 dentists available to consumers.
  • The accessibility of the website allows for consumers to find answers to problems quickly.
  • Everything can be done easily online including the paperwork, checking your policy content and checking information about your provider.
  • Multiple plans available with varying levels of coverage.
  • No waiting periods.
  • No claims or waiting for reimbursement.
  • Help for those struggling to keep up with bills through their assistance program.
  • A 24 hour a day dedicated dentist line with Aetna Voice Advantage.

Is Aetna Dental right for me?

Although Aetna Dental has provided its services to over 14 million members, it is worth noting everything about Aetna Dental and not just the positives. See below why Aetna Dental may not be the right provider for you:

  • Research of plans available in your state is essential as plans and the options with them vary from state to state.
  • Plans provided by Aetna are not available in all states.
  • Although Aetna Dental does offer options, there is not a broad selection of plans to choose from, even if they are available in your area.
  • Services from Aetna Dental’s customer service is often criticised.
  • Your plan may have age limits, it may have either or both an orthodontic age limit and a dependent age limit.
  • There is $20 processing fee for signing up.

Better Business Bureau (BBB)

Aetna has an ‘A+’ rating with the BBB.

Do the Aetna Dental plans count as insurance?

No. Aetna plans are dental savings plans. What Aetna provides is what they consider to be an affordable alternative to traditional insurance which has better flexibility to meet the needs of consumers looking for dental protection.

Using an Aetna Dental plan alongside dental insurance

You are not allowed to use your dental insurance and an Aetna Dental plan for the same procedure. However, to make the most of having both (if you do have both), contact your dentist to coordinate treatment to ensure this occurs correctly.

Conclusion

Aetna bases it service on affordability and does this through its plans and its assistance programs. Their plans provide you the chance to pick the most suitable plan for you based on your required coverage. Although not available nationwide, the strong background and history of Aetna as well as the millions of consumers it provides for, highly suggests that often, consumers find the right plans for themselves.