Considering a Dental Administration Career? 5 Facts about Ontario’s Healthy Smiles ProgramMarch 08, 2019
March 8, 2019
Good dental care is essential for children and youth. Even for those who have yet to lose their primary or baby teeth, proper hygiene and effective treatment can make a world of difference. Preventing painful cavities, improving oral and overall health, and teaching good habits will help protect their teeth long into the future.
Fortunately, Ontario has a government-funded provincial dental program to help ensure that all children and youth, regardless of their family’s income and whether or not they’re insured, can receive much-needed, high-quality dental care. Healthy Smiles Ontario provides free preventive, routine, and emergency dental services for children and youth 17 years and under from low-income households, with hundreds of thousands of children in the province eligible for the program.
If you’re interested in a career in dental administration in Ontario, here are five facts to help familiarize you with this important program.
1. Healthy Smiles Has Combined Several Publicly Funded Dental Programs
As of January 1st, 2016, Healthy Smiles Ontario has combined several formerly separate publicly funded dental programs. These include dental benefits for children under Ontario Works, the Ontario Disability Support Program, and the Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities Program, as well as the Children In Need of Treatment Program, and preventive oral health services offered by local public health units. Any children who enrolled in these programs were automatically transitioned onto the Healthy Smiles Ontario program.
2. Many Children Are Eligible and Some Are Automatically Enrolled
Children are eligible for the program if they are 17 years of age or younger, if they live in Ontario, and if they come from a household with a family net income equal to or less than the limits set out by the program. For families with one child, for example, the limit is $23,170 a year. This limit rises with the number of children in a family. Children are automatically enrolled in the program if they receive assistance under Temporary Care Assistance or Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities, or if they or their families receive Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support.
3. Healthy Smiles Covers Preventive, Routine, and Emergency Dental Care
Healthy Smiles Ontario covers a broad range of services for children and youth, including preventive, routine, and emergency dental care. This includes check-ups, cleanings, fillings for cavities, x-rays, scaling, tooth extraction, and urgent or emergency dental care.
When you become a dental office administrator, however, you should be aware that Healthy Smiles Ontario doesn’t cover cosmetic work, meaning that treatments like teeth whitening and braces are not eligible.
Health Smiles covers a broad range of essential dental treatments for children
4. Families Can Easily Enrol Online or by Mail
It’s easy for families to apply for Healthy Smiles Ontario either online or by mail as long as they’ve filed their taxes in the previous year and have a valid social insurance number. If during your dental administration career you encounter any clients who would like to sign up for the program but don’t have a social insurance number or haven’t filed their taxes, you can let them know that they can still apply by mail with an appropriate guarantor who can vouch for the applicant’s identity, age, and residency in Ontario.
5. See the Benefits in Your Dental Administration Career
Tooth decay is a common yet preventable chronic disease among children, particularly those from low-income neighbourhoods. Healthy Smiles Ontario can help low-income families prevent chronic tooth decay and support children’s oral health. In your career as a dental administrator, you’ll be able to see firsthand the positive impact this has on the children and youth it helps!
In your dental administration career, you’ll see the Healthy Smiles program’s positive impact firsthand
Are you ready for a career as a dental administrator?
Contact Medix College to learn more about our dental administration program!