Florida Healthy Kids

Press

Healthy Kids Press Contact,
Ashley Carr, Chief Marketing Officer,
(850) 701-6160, connect@healthykids.org.

11/01/2001

November 1, 2001

Florida Healthy Kids Launches New Dental Program In Dade, Monroe, Charlotte And Desoto Counties

TALLAHASSEE, FL - The Florida Healthy Kids Corporation, an organization dedicated to providing quality health care to Florida's uninsured school-age children, is pleased to announce the implementation of dental services for Healthy Kids participants. Implementation in Dade, Monroe, Charlotte and DeSoto counties begins November 1.

During the 2000 legislative session, the Florida Healthy Kids Corporation received funding from the Florida Legislature to add comprehensive dental benefits to the already existing medical benefits package. At a recent Board of Directors meeting, Healthy Kids awarded multi-year contracts to Atlantic Dental, Inc., CompDent Corporation and Delta Dental Insurance Company. The benefits provided through these contracts include full diagnostic and preventive services, basic and restorative care, as well as major restorative treatment from a network of participating dentists.

In May 2000, the first-ever U.S. Surgeon General's report on oral health was released. The report found that more than 51 million school hours are lost each year due to dental problems. * Healthy Kids recognizes the need to offer health benefits, which are appropriate to the lifestyle and age of children. In conjunction with benefits such as regular doctor visits and immunizations, dental care is essential to the health of Florida's youngest citizens.

Rose Naff, Executive Director of the Florida Healthy Kids Corporation, considers the program a successful product of the combined effort among governmental agencies, health care providers, and education officials at the local and state level. Naff believes oral health can be promoted and maintained through this combined effort. "We're quite pleased to begin the new year by adding dental services to our enrollees' medical benefits package."

It is estimated that more than 500,000 of Florida's children lack health insurance. The Florida Healthy Kids Corporation, a nonprofit organization, was established by the Florida Legislature in 1990 to address this problem and has received state and national recognition for its innovative approach to bridging the health care gap for previously uninsured children.

Healthy Kids, which insures more than 177,000 children statewide, has been lauded as a national model receiving the prestigious Innovations in American Government Award in 1996 from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Parents who want to apply for Healthy Kids coverage can call toll-free 1-888-FLA-KIDS (1-888-352-5437). Applications are being accepted now.

*This information may be found in the: US Department of Health and Human Services. Oral Health in America: A Report of the Surgeon General-- Executive Summary. Rockville, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, 2000.

Healthy Kids Press Contact,
Ashley Carr, Chief Marketing Officer,
(850) 701-6160, connect@healthykids.org.