My spouse and I chose Metlife Dental Insurance as a secondary plan to cover the gaps in our primary insurance’s coverage. We chose Metlife primarily because of its affordability and because it covered a good percentage of major dental, which was a concern for us. However, our children’s pediatric dentist dropped them as one of their accepted insurances citing Metlife’s low reimbursement rate. The dentist’s secretary explained to me that the office actually lost money on some procedures because of the low reimbursements. In particular, she cited anesthesia as one of the poorest reimbursed dental procedures by Metlife, despite the fact that anesthesia is commonly used in pediatric patients when dental procedures are performed.
Another reason our children’s dentist dropped Metlife Dental Insurance as an accepted insurance was because claims were paid slowly, often taking months to process. I can testify that it was not just our children’s dentist who was paid slowly as it took months for them to pay my own dentist for dental work. This was extremely frustrating for me since I could not submit for reimbursement via my flexible spending account without an explanation of benefits and frustrating for my dentist as it was not uncommon for claims to be more than six months old before finally getting paid.
In addition to a slow claims process, they also were quite slow to approve treatment. My dentist submitted a proposed treatment plan to obtain an estimate of insurance coverage before the treatment was begun. Metlife failed to respond timely, which delayed treatment. At one point, they lost paperwork and my dentist had to resubmit the required information all over again. When I called to follow up, the customer representative did not want to check on my claim because by opening it, it would move to the back of the queue, causing a further delay.
Metlife Dental Insurance wasn’t all bad, though. For the price paid, we did receive a fair amount of coverage for dental procedures performed. Using a dentist within their plan certainly did help keep costs under control, though for rural areas or under-served areas, extensive travel may be needed to find a dentist on their list of providers. Moreover, having dealt with Metlife’s customer service on many occasions, I do think that they have good customer service. All representatives that I spoke to were courteous and genuinely committed to assisting me resolve my issue.
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