Careington Dental Insurance
The Careington Dental & Vision Plus discount plan helps reduce overall health care cost via substantial discounts on dental and vision care. Members take advantage of significant savings on a wide range of dental procedures. The Careington dental plan is accepted by one of the largest national dental networks, focused on neighborhood dentists. They offer a transparent pricing, with their fee-per-service price schedules.
Careington is a dental plan, not dental insurance. This is a fee-for-service plan, with members paying for services rendered by the dentist. The big difference is that with the dental plan, you pay a discounted fee. You must visit a dentist that is part of the Careington network to get the discounted price. Members can find Careington dentists in their area by going to their Provider Search webpage, or calling their toll free customer support number.
Covered Dental Procedures
You can save 20% to 60% on most dental procedures. These include oral exams, unlimited cleanings, and major dental work such as dentures, root canals and crowns. Orthodontia including braces and retainers for both adults and children come at a 20% discount.
Careington also offers a 20% discount on dental specialties such as Oral Surgery, Pediatric Dentistry, Periodontics, and Prosthodontics, but you must check first to see if there is a network dentist who covers the specialty in your area.
Dentists in the Careington network meet selective credentialing standards based on education, license standing and other requirements. Members can visit any network dentist without a referral, and can change providers at any time.
Cost of Plan
You can purchase the Careington Dental & Vision Plus discount plan from their website, or call their toll free number (800) 400-8789. At the Careington home page, select the information link on the dental plan. The landing page has a map of the states, just click through your state to buy.
The monthly cost is $9.95 per month, or you can buy a year at $99.00, and get a discount. You can add a spouse for $14.95 per month or $149.00 per year. The cost for an entire family is $17.95 per month or $179.00 per year. The cost of the plan is far less than monthly premiums for traditional dental insurance.
Careington offers other plans at higher rates that bundle in more health care services along with the dental plan, such as prescriptions, hearing, diabetic supplies, chiropractic services and more.
Sample Savings with Careington
Careington publishes examples of the cost of dental procedures with membership in their dental plan. For example, and adult cleaning that costs $118 would run only $49 for members, a 59% savings. A child cleaning usually costing $83 would be $37 for members. A more serious procedure, a molar root canal, typically costs $1911, but for Careington members it's only $866, a 55% savings. These sample fees are based on averages compile from statistics from Chicago, Orlando, Los Angeles and New York in 2014.
Ease of use is a nice feature of the Careington dental plan. After you join the plan you receive a membership kit, including a membership card. Look over the membership kit and directions on using the plan.
Bring your membership card with you when you visit the Careington network dentist. Present the card at the time of service to receive your discount. Visit the company website to locate providers in your area or call their member services toll free number.
Be sure to mention your membership when you schedule an appointment. At the time of the service you are responsible for paying the discounted fee.
Dental Plan vs. Dental Insurance
The Careington dental plan is not insurance, but that does not mean it is an inferior product. For some, it's a better option. As a discount dental plan, it offers a price advantage over traditional dental insurance. With average dental insurance at about $40 per month, per person, Careington comes in a lot cheaper. It your dental insurance premium is covered by your employer, even in part, it may work out well. But for individuals and families with no employer paid dental insurance, it could be a budget buster.
With Careington dental, you pay the membership fee and gain access to their network at discounted fees. They provide you with a list of services provided and the rates you will pay for them. Participating network dentists have agreed to work for members at these rates. It is a good idea to bring a copy of the fee schedule to the dentist at the time of service, so they do not attempt to overcharge.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Independent customer reviews of the Careington dental plan vary quite a bit. On balance most customers report a positive experience with the Careington plan. Some who were dissatisfied did not understand that Careington is a discount dental plan, not dental insurance. Others were dissatisfied with the dental care they received for a particular provider. It is clear that with a discount dental plan like Careington, it is up to each member to carefully check the reputation of each provider in advance. The cost of the plan and the discount fees themselves are a very good value.
One advantage of Careington over traditional dental insurance is that there are no waiting periods for services. This really comes into focus with major services like crowns, where those with dental insurance may have to wait a long period before they can visit a specialist. With Careington, you simply select a provider in the network and book your appointment.
You can call the member services department of Careington toll free between 7am and 7pm CST. They also offer email support and have a FAQ page at their website listing all customer service options. Some members have complained about long wait times.
Verdict - Very Good
Careington is an economical choice, helping people to access a full range of dental care. The pay-as-you-go plan may be cheaper than traditional dental insurance, with dental insurance often covering only a portion of fees. Prior to purchase, check the availability of their network dentists in your area, and check their reputations to insure that quality care is accessible to you via the plan.