On January 1st 2019, HBF (Hospital Benefit Fund of WA), the largest private health insurance market share holder in WA, cancelled its preferred provider contracts with WA dentists. This is good news for our clients.
A tacit admission by HBF that the scheme doesn’t work and is not in the best interest of its members now means there is an even playing field for all dentists and better access to independent practices with a focus on technology and innovation.
No matter which dentist you see, you will get the same rebate for dental items under HBF. This has been a great win for all our patients, which means that you’ll get more back for treatment items here at our practice at Smile Forever Dental. The reverse is true for patients who attend a dentist who was previously on the preferred provider list – they will get less back than before.
Dentistry in WA can be segmented into two markets. Preferred provider dentists (or practices) and non preferred provider or independent dentists (or practices). Approximately 70% of dentists in WA are preferred provider and the remainder are independent. Preferred provider dentists who sign agreements with the major health funds find themselves restricted in their freedom of practice and with controls placed on their fee per treatment item. There is therefore, more incentive for preferred providers to conduct unnecessary treatment on patients, to work faster, to use inferior materials and to use cheaper overseas laboratories for the manufacture of crowns etc. All of these result in poor outcomes for patients.
Smile Forever Dental is and will always remain an independent dental practice. Our focus is providing the best treatment outcomes for you without compromise. This strategy is what has built our practice reputation despite the external influences of the health funds.
We continue to provide the best dental treatment available using the latest techniques, most up to date equipment, best dental materials and the best local dental laboratories. This in combination with our down to earth and completely transparent approach means there is no better time to come in and take care of your dental health.
Keep smiling – see you at your next check up at Smile Forever Dental!