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Dental Insurance in China
This article will guide you through dental health insurance options in China. We will cover not only dental raiders as part of regular insurance policies, but also dental insurance plans that you can purchase separately. Keep on reading to learn more!
Who needs dental insurance?
First of all, why would you need dental insurance cover? This is a question you need to ask yourself. We always recommend clients to check on how much medical expenses they encountered in the past. For example, a person has perfectly aligned teeth and only does cleaning once per year. In this case, there is no need to get top of the line expensive plan that will cover orthodontics care. So check your own situation, start by figuring out:
how much do I usually spend on medical for my teeth? Take this amount on average per year.
is there any future dental work I need to get done? What’s the approximate costs of it? This will help us find you the right plan to cover the expenses you will face.
Does China have dental insurance?
Most private insurance plans in China can include dental benefits as part of your cover. Those, typically, will be optional benefits, meaning you will need to pay extra premium to get them. There are also option where you can opt for dental only insurance plan. More on this below.
What does dental insurance include?
This depends on how comprehensive insurance plan is. A lot of policies will cover emergency dental care even if you don’t have additional dental raider. This usually goes as part of the core benefits. In other words, inpatient part of your insurance plan. So check carefully table of benefits and figure out if you have those already or no.
Most insurance companies in China can let you purchase dental raider for extra costs. This is an optional add-on. Meaning, you pay extra premium and those benefits will be added to your plan. Typically, with options dental care is classified under 3 options.
Class 1 – preventative care. Sometimes you will see the term “basic care” in your policy documents. Under this, you can claim things such as: routine examinations and cleanings. As well as, scaling and polishing. Keep in mind that some companies can apply restriction on how many cleanings you can do per year. Certain insurance companies offer 100% cover for this type of treatment. Most, however, will require a certain copayment from your side, which is usually 20-25%.
Class 2 – restorative care. This includes more complex things such as dental surgeries or crowns. Composite fillings and extractions in most cases are part of this benefit as well.
Class 3 – major care. Here is where you will encounter large medical bills. Not all insurance companies offer such services, so if you need it, let your insurance broker know. If you are concerned about one of the below type of treatment or need to get some of such done, you will definitely want them to be as part of your insurance cover. Orthodontic care, including braces and even aligners, bridges and dental prostheses, as well as implants. Most of the time, insurance companies have a copay of 50% on such care.
How much benefits limit should I get?
Dental insurance raiders that cover preventative care, will provide you with RMB 3-6,000 limit. You can use those per person and per year. On each renewal limit gets renewed. Generally speaking, this is enough. We will need of course look at the costs of dental care.
Is dental care cheap in China?
The rate varies and largely depends on what clinic you visit. In Tier 1 cities in China regular cleanings in international hospitals will cost you RMB 500-900. Deep clean and scaling will be towards RMB 800-1,300 mark per time.
If your major concern is class 2-3 dental care, first of all, there are not many plans that have high enough limits to cover such. For example, German implants will roughly cost you RMB 16,000 in Beijing or Shanghai. Korean brand will be more around RMB 13,000 mark. Whole 2 years course of braces or aligners will be around 20,000-60,000. Those primarily depend on complexity of situation as well as what materials and treatment you use. For those, we suggest clients to consider dental insurance plan with minimum amount of cover of RMB 10,000 per year.
I have insurance through my work, but it doesn’t include any dental care. Can I purchase those separately?
Yes, you can. Be prepared, plans that meet such requirement as of 2023 are only offered by local insurance providers. We are not aware of any international insurance company that has such a plan. Below example is from one of the largest local insurance companies. This is a very popular option these days if you need major dental care done.
Such plans work as a package. You can carry medical expenses out of pocket, but bills that clinic will give you are different from what they give to insurance companies. The better relationship there is between them and insurance provider, the lower will be the price. This is why, insurance companies can sell you such packages. Below one is another example of similar level cover but less limits.