RICHARDSON, Texas, Feb. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of
Texas (BCBSTX) is announcing the launch of BlueCare Dental Connection(SM),
a new integrated medical-dental program. The program is unique in the
industry because it compares an individual's medical and dental data to
create a customized plan aimed to improve their health. This new approach
is designed to specifically help users optimize their overall health by
making better decisions about their oral health through the pursuit of
evidence-based research and information.
Research continues to show a potential link between oral care and
overall health. Through BlueCare Dental Connection, BCBSTX can utilize
medical and dental claim information to identify members at risk with
health conditions complicated by dental disease, such as diabetes,
cardiovascular disease and pregnancy. By analyzing this claim data, BCBSTX
hopes to proactively reach out to these members and influence their
behavior before any adverse conditions escalate further. In addition,
BCBSTX is reaching out to select members determined to be at risk for
dental caries or periodontal (gum) disease in an effort to minimize or
prevent these dental conditions early on. The goal of the BlueCare Dental
Connection program, which is available at no cost to members who carry
BCBSTX medical and dental insurance, is to help members identify potential
opportunities for dental health intervention and prevention and realize the
benefits to their overall health.
Targeted intervention to these at-risk members will be accomplished
through a coordinated effort of mailings and staff outreach in addition to
expanded web tools and information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of
Texas web site.
"We feel this program is both critical in maintaining our members'
overall health and assisting us in reducing the ever-increasing costs of
healthcare," states Dr. Timothy Custer, Dental Director for Dental Network
of America, a subsidiary of Health Care Services Corporation and
administrator of BCBSTX. "By combining online support tools with a
coordinated outreach component, BCBSTX will be able to target members most
in need of education and intervention".
The health insurer is launching an educational content webpage called
The Dental Wellness Center at
http://www.bcbstx.com/employer/bc_dental_connection.htm). The site will
host current educational articles, information on specific medical
conditions and their relationship to oral health, along with feature rich
"Consumers have a growing need for dental information," continued Dr.
Custer. "That is why we have added the Dental Wellness Center with features
such as Ask-a-Dentist, which allows members to receive answers to general
clinical questions via email within 24 hours. In addition, the Dental Cost
Advisor allows BCBSTX members quick and easy access to average price ranges
for any dental service targeted to any particular region in the country."
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas -- the only statewide,
customer-owned health insurer in Texas -- is the largest provider of health
benefits in the state, working with nearly 40,000 physicians and 400
hospitals to serve 3.8 million members in all 254 counties. Blue Cross and
Blue Shield of Texas is a division of Health Care Services Corporation
(HCSC), which also operates the Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in
Illinois, New Mexico and Oklahoma. HCSC is a Mutual Legal Reserve Company
and an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
Dental Network of America (DNoA) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Health
Care Service Corporation (HCSC). DNoA acts as the administrator for all
HCSC dental programs, including BlueCare Dental Connection, providing
comprehensive administrative support. DNoA also offers services in
proprietary network development, actuarial, underwriting, marketing and
sales support to their clients. Dental products are administered for groups
with as few as two employees to thousands of employees. DNoA currently
works with over 91,000 dentist access points nationally, ensuring high
quality and affordable dental care to its members and clients.
SOURCE Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas