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The People Behind the MassHealth Dental Cuts: "It's penny-wise, pound-foolish"

The People Behind the MassHealth Dental Cuts: "It's penny-wise, pound-foolish"

October 13, 2010

A moving story in the Cape Cod Times puts a human face on the cuts to MassHealth dental benefits.

Jill Sablone was the victim of a car crash that left her brain damaged. She is legally blind and has a shunt in her head to drain excess fluid from her brain. She must visit the dentist about four times a year to reduce the risk of a bacterial infection from developing in her mouth and spreading to the shunt's thin, flexible tube.

Unfortunately, due to the recent cuts to MassHealth adult dental, she is now having tremendous difficulty accessing dental care. According to her sister, Jill’s most viable option now is to have her teeth extracted, or she will end up in the ER "It's penny-wise, pound-foolish," she explained. "You're going to end up with emergency room visits and problems with her shunt." They are hoping to avoid extractions for health and nutrition reasons.

To learn more about how to get involved in the fight to restore MassHealth dental benefits, visit the oral health advocacy taskforce page at www.OHAT.org.
-Christine Keeves