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Chamber makes new, ‘no-cost’ dental plan available to members

Inside the ChamberMarianne Virgili

The Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association is offering a new product to its long list of membership benefits: employee dental benefits at no cost to the employer. Approximately 69 percent of all employers in Colorado no longer offer dental plan benefits to their employees. Most employers would like to offer dental benefits, but with the rising cost of employer-sponsored medical plans, they simply can’t spend more on fringe benefits.There is strength in numbers, and because of our membership base of more than 600, we are able to offer two dental plans. What is nice about this is that employers are not required to contribute to the cost. Better still, employees are allowed to choose between any dentist, or they can select a network provider. Network dental plans are similar to HMOs. Different than the fee-for-service, claims-driven indemnity plans we are all used to, they provide substantial savings off normal fees and offer some preventive services at little cost to the plan member. The more traditional indemnity plans (or dental insurance) are competitively priced at $29 per month (most plans in our area run $37 per month) and operate like the dental insurance that most of us are used to – but they have no waiting periods if you already have dental insurance from another carrier.With the HMO-type network plans, Chamber member employees pay $12.50 a month with a two-year rate guarantee. The employer is not required to contribute. Family care rates max out at $35.75 a month. There are no deductibles or claim forms, no waiting periods on services. Annual benefits are unlimited; pre-existing conditions do not apply. Employers with as few as one employee are eligible. This option is particularly attractive to employees who otherwise would not seek traditional dental care. If you are interested in learning more, contact Anita Pollock at (970) 683-5424. To join the chamber and take advantage of these and other benefits, or for a list of dentists who support the local chamber of commerce, contact Raelyn Westley at (970) 945-6589. Marianne Virgili is president and CEO of the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association.


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