THE CHILD DENTAL BENEFITS SCHEDULE ~ CDBS
From January 2017, children (aged 2-17 years) who are eligible, will receive $1 000 each to use towards basic dental services over the next two years, through the Child Dental Benefits Schedule.
Quality and caring dental care for children will provide a lifetime of beautiful smiles and healthy mouths, and we will bulk bill the following services for eligible children under the Child Dental Benefits Schedule:
Each year eligible families and teenagers will receive a letter to confirm eligibility.
You can confirm your child’s eligibility and balance amount by accessing your Medicare account through my.gov.au or calling the Medicare general enquiries line on 132 011.
Our dental professionals are very experienced in connecting with our younger patients in a caring way. We want our smaller patients to feel comfortable with the idea of going to the dentist, and seeing it as a crucial part of a healthy life.
We also offer a firmness, care and motivation for older children and teenagers, who may be over indulging in sweets, soft drinks or not quite up to scratch with their home care.
Our Dental Hygienist and Oral Health Therapist, Christine,plays an integral role in teaching the importance of thorough brushing and flossing. She meets our smaller patients and gives them the encouragement and education about teeth that they need to develop good lifelong habits for a clean and healthy smile. Christine can also perform dental duties on children with her dual degree from the University of Queensland.
For more information on how to have a successful first visit to the dentist, please read Dr Amy Daley's blog on how to introduce children to the dentist in a positive way, which provides some great tips and ideas.
update june 2017
Just a third of the 2.9 million children eligible for government fund rebates have accessed dental care, with two million children missing out on $1000 of entitlement to dental care every two years, with the private dentist of their choice, with 97% of dentist agreeing to provide bulk billed service. The funds have been available since 2014, but with little promotion and two government reviews to investigate the reason for the shortfall as why so few children have accessed the program. Parents are informed about eligibility once a year in January within a general mail out, known as the current eligibility notification, which is thought to not provide readily recognisable advice of an entitlement.
The program recently survived the government trying to shut down the funding to save money in the 2016 budget, following rejections from Parliament. A new scheme had been proposed with 30% less funding, but covering 7 million more people, including the cost of teenage braces. The plan was opposed by the Australian Dental Association because it was not means tested, and was realistically providing $42 of dental care for each eligible person per year. Late last year the government reduced the cap to $700 after an effort to axe the program entirely, which was blocked by the Senate, but has now been signed into law, and increased back to the original cap of $1000. The scheme is for children aged two to 17 years of age, for those in families that qualify for Family Tax Benefit A, with the benefits available for basic dental services including check ups, x-rays, fillings, extractions and root canals (braces are not covered).
Seven in 10 kids under the age of nine have active dental decay and 30 000 children a year are hospitalised for urgent dental treatment under general anaesthetic, the majority of which are preventible, and where there is funding to protect children's teeth. Our next generation should have the right to the best care possible and all measures to protect their teeth, and allow healthy life habits.
Please note that our practice has agreed to be a bulk bill with the CDBS as a community service to assist children to access the dental care that is required. The amount that is covered for dental services, used at other providers, and limits set are entirely controlled by the Australian Government.