Policy Center Releases Technical Report on General Anesthesia

May 18, 2012 12:16 PM
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The AAPD Oral Health Policy and Research Center is pleased to announce the publication of a Technical Report: An Essential Health Benefit: General Anesthesia for Treatment of Early Childhood Caries.
 
The report provides information in support of the assertion that General Anesthesia may be a medically necessary when treating some dental patients and, therefore, should be included as an essential health benefit under both public and private medical insurance coverage for children.
 

Summary

General anesthesia (GA) is a medical procedure that renders the patient unconscious, allowing for the safe and humane provision of medical and dental diagnostic and surgically invasive procedures. Dental treatment under GA is an effective way to provide medically necessary care to those children who may be cognitively immature, highly anxious or fearful, have special needs, or medically-compromised and unable to receive treatment in a traditional office setting. Delivering dental treatment under GA can have significant positive effects on the quality of life for children and their families and can improve access to dental care. GA may be medically necessary when treating some dental patients and, therefore, should be included as an essential health benefit under both public and private medical insurance coverage for children. While GA is necessary for only a small subset of pediatric dental patients, insurance coverage is indispensable for these children so that necessary dental procedures can be accomplished in a humane, socially appropriate, efficacious, and safe manner.
 


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