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Dental Bills High in California

AHRQ News and Numbers, November 10, 2010

AHRQ News and Numbers provides statistical highlights on the use and cost of health services and health insurance in the United States.

Dental bills in California averaged $813 per patient in 2007, roughly a quarter more than the national average of $643, according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

The Federal agency's analysis of dental care spending and use in the 10 largest States in 2007 also found that:

  • Nationally, nearly half (49 percent) of the cost of dental care was paid out of pocket versus 16 percent for other types of health care.
  • Compared to the national average for dental expenses paid out of pocket, Florida and Ohio had higher and lower rates—69 percent and 40 percent, respectively.
  • Insurance was a factor. Private insurance paid for only 27.5 percent of dental bills in Florida but 48.5 percent in Ohio. Portions not paid by private insurers or out-of-pocket were paid by Medicaid or other sources.
  • About 42 percent of all Americans incurred at least one dental care expenditure. Nationally, this varied from 31 percent of Texans to 54 percent of Michigan residents.

AHRQ, which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, improves the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of health care for all Americans. The data in this AHRQ News and Numbers summary are taken from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), a detailed source of information on the health services used by Americans, the frequency with which they are used, the cost of those services, and how they are paid. For more information, go to Dental Expenditures in the 10 Largest States, 2007.

For additional AHRQ data on dental care, go to Dental Coverage of Adults, 21 to 64, United States, 1997 and 2007.

For more information, contact Bob Isquith at (301-427-1539).

Current as of November 2010
Internet Citation: Dental Bills High in California: AHRQ News and Numbers, November 10, 2010. November 2010. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.


The information on this page is archived and provided for reference purposes only.


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