Medi-Cal dental services for adults to be re-established May 1, 2014

Basic Medi-Cal dental services for adults to be re-established May 1, 2014

Nearly five years after the state eliminated dental benefits for adult beneficiaries in the Medi-Cal program, many of those benefits are being restored as of May 1, 2014.

Faced with a multibillion-dollar deficit in 2009, the administration and the legislature eliminated coverage for routine dental care for adults in the Denti-Cal program beginning July 1 of that year. According to federal Medicaid law, dental services are only mandatory for children, and as part of a broad effort to eliminate the gap between revenues and spending, the optional program for adults, with a few exceptions for special populations, was defunded by the state.

The California Legislature re-established a basic adult dental program beginning on May 1. These services include:

  • initial oral examinations, radiographs/photographic images, prophylaxis and fluoride treatments;
  • amalgam and composite restorations;
  • prefabricated stainless steel, resin and resin window crowns;
  • anterior root canal therapy;
  • complete dentures, including immediate dentures; and
  • complete denture adjustments, repairs and relines.

For more info, see

  1. Dental-Cal Bulletin (August 2013)
  2. Dental-Cal website (part of CA Dept of Health Care Services)
  3. The California Dental Association (CDA) announcement

Published by

Michael Grodsky

Michael Grodsky, is owner of Aquarius Insurance Services and Aquarius Financial.

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