HED:Supervisors opt for new dental plan

CATEGORY: SUP Lee Board of SupervisorsMOULDE

HED:Supervisors opt for new dental plan

By Philip Moulden

Daily Journal

Lee County supervisors Monday approved an employee dental insurance plan that will stave off anticipated premium increases for at least another year.

The new plan will become effective April 1.

One of two options offered county workers under the new plan could cut premiums in half, although that option severely restricts the choice of dentists.

The CompDent American Dental Plan offers workers a “prepaid” provision based on a preferred provider network. While individual employee premiums would run only $9.40 a month, only one dentist in the Tupelo area has signed up to provide service under the plan.

Coverage for one additional dependent under the prepaid plan would cost $16 a month while family coverage would cost $22.10 a month.

There is no deductible or waiting period for coverage. Officials said they are trying to get additional local dentists to participate in the plan.

A second option allows employees to use the dentist of their choice, but premiums will be higher. Worker only premiums will run $17.50 a month, while the worker and one dependent would pay $30 a month and family coverage would cost $44 a month.

Deductibles are $50 per person up to $150, and there is no waiting period for coverage.

Still, either plan is superior to existing coverage, Bell said. Announced boosts under the current plan would raise premiums to $21.54 a month for an employee, $41.71 a month for a worker and one dependent, and $56.70 a month for a family.

There is also a $100 deductible and a waiting period before new participants qualify for coverage under the current policy.

In other action, the board took under advisement bids from seven telephone companies seeking to provide equipment and service for the administration offices in the new Tupelo-Lee County Jail. Equipment bids ranged from $18,950 to $38,787, but county officials said costs of various options must be studied before they can determine which company submitted the “lowest and best” bid.