The recent Seattle Times article [“State dentists lobby is blocking potential source of low-cost care,” Page One, Jan. 4] on the political fight over allowing dental therapists to perform some of the functions of dentists misses a key point. How has a state that was one of the most ardent in cheerleading for the Affordable Care Act failed so miserably in supporting pediatric dental care?
The guarantee of such care is, after all, one of only 10 “essential health benefits” under the ACA. Rather than make excuses for children’s Medicaid reimbursement more miserable than Alabama’s and engaging in a divisive fight, it seems prudent to first support existing dental care and, indeed, all Medicaid care, with state rates that are both rational and moral.
Our state’s deplorable neglect of the medically indigent doesn’t start, or stop, with kids’ teeth.
Brendan Williams, Olympia