Saturday, June 03, 2017

"Deamonte Driver’s death was the direct result of a system of commoditized dental care. Some 114 million people lack any sort of dental coverage in the United States, and about half of children on Medicaid did not receive a single dental service in 2012. We could implement a system of universal coverage that would make treatment available on the basis of health needs, not means. But we have not. As Otto traces the history of modern dentistry, from eighteenth-century surgical experiments to the founding of the first American school of dentistry in 1840, she explains how the United States instead developed a “carefully guarded, largely private system,” one that is “enormously difficult to reach for those without mobility or money.” The state of our teeth, she argues, reveals—and reinforces—deep inequalities in society."

Note: to be accurate, some dental treatment in the UK is free or cheap, and that depends on whether you have an income or unemployed, but implant, for example, is expensive. A few people people go to Poland and Romania to have an implant.

The devastating effects of dental inequality in America

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