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  WDA Healthy Choices E-Lert  
January 2012 | Legislative E-Newsletter

AB 251/SB 186
Non-covered Services Legislation promotes free-market economy

The WDA is a strong advocate of non-covered services legislation, which would prohibit dental insurers from setting fees for procedures not covered under their company's plans. The legislation - AB 251 and SB 186 - would allow dentists to continue providing quality care to long-term patients while avoiding the unfair practice of cost-shifting to those who have no dental benefits at all. It also simplifies access to dental care for Wisconsin patients by keeping treatment decisions between the patient and dentist without interference by a third party that has chosen not to cover the service.

Non-covered services hearing
WDA dentists emphasized their professional role as "doctors of oral health" by wearing scrubs and lab coats to the NCS hearing on Nov. 10 in the state Capitol.

Similar legislation has passed in 26 other states, and AB 251 and SB 186 have strong, bipartisan support here in Wisconsin. Some have questioned, however, whether it's appropriate for government to enter a contract relationship between two private entities - in this case, the dentist and the insurance company.

We believe it is appropriate in this instance. Dentists, like other health care providers, cannot join together to seek insurance contract changes because of federal antitrust laws. Ironically, insurance companies are among the few entities exempt from federal antitrust statutes.

This is an unfair practice and it goes against the tenets of a free-market economy. We encourage legislators to learn the facts about non-covered services legislation in Wisconsin and vote for its passage.

You can learn more here.


New WDA officers
Leaders include dentists from throughout Wisconsin

Dr. Steven Stoll, a Menasha resident with a general dental practice in Neenah, is the new president of the WDA.

Dr. Steve StollDr. Stoll has identified two priorities for his presidential year: increase grassroots members' involvement and strengthen cooperative working relationships with state legislators.

"As doctors of oral health, we have a responsibility to help our elected officials and the public understand that dental health is critical to overall health. Ensuring residents have proper dental care is important to our state economically and socially," Dr. Stoll said.

Other 2011-2012 WDA officers are:

Dr. Tim Durtsche  

President-Elect Dr. Timothy Durtsche of La Crosse

Dr. Julio Rodriguez  

Vice President Dr. Julio Rodriguez of Brodhead

Dr. Robert Brennan  

Editor Dr. Robert Brennan of Neenah

Dr. John R. Moser   Treasurer Dr. John R. Moser of Milwaukee
Dr. Gene Shoemaker  

Immediate Past-President Dr. Gene Shoemaker of Waukesha

Dr. Richard Lofthouse  

Speaker of the WDA House of Delegates Dr. Richard Lofthouse of Fennimore

WDA Trustees include:

Northwest Region 1

Dr. Jeffrey Nehring (Mercer)
Dr. Julie Fox (Wausau)
Dr. David Kenyon (Altoona)

Northeast Region 2

Dr. Pete Hehli (Appleton)
Dr. Paul Feit (Sturgeon Bay)
Dr. Jeffrey Kraig (Fond du Lac)

Greater Milwaukee Region 3

Dr. Paul Levine (Milwaukee)
Dr. Thomas Kielma (Milwaukee)
Dr. Thomas Raimann (Hales Corners)

Southeast Region 4

Dr. Ned Murphy (Racine)
Dr. Ryan Braden (Lake Geneva)
Dr. Barrett Straub (Port Washington)

Southwest Region 5

Dr. L. Stanley Brysh (Madison)
Dr. Dave Clemens (Wisconsin Dells)
Dr. Patrick Tepe (Middleton)

Region 6 (student)

Mr. Michael Jumes (Marquette University School of Dentistry)



Jan. 18 - WDA Legislative Day - Madison

Dentists from across the state will gather in Madison on Wednesday, Jan. 18, to visit legislators in their Capitol offices and share important information from Wisconsin's dental community.

Feb. 3 - Give Kids A Smile® - Statewide

Every February during National Children's Dental Health Month, dentists in Wisconsin and nationwide provide free services to children from low-income families as part of Give Kids A Smile® national dental access program. We invite you to visit one of the more than 300 GKAS® events planned throughout Wisconsin on Friday, Feb. 3.  Since 2003, Wisconsin GKAS® events have delivered $5 million in free care to 34,281 youth. Watch for invitations from constituent dentists.

June 29 and 30 - WDA Foundation/WDA Mission of Mercy - Madison


The WDA Foundation and WDA will host their fourth Mission of Mercy June 29 and 30 in Madison. It is expected to be the largest MOM event nationwide to date, with double the equipment and chairs. Our goals for this super-sized, two-day charitable dental event: 3,500 patients; $1.75 million in care; more than 2,000 volunteers; and $255,000 in cash and in-kind donations. (On average, $5 to $7 in care is donated at WDA MOM for every $1 received.) MOM is a real-life illustration of the need to make "Healthy Choices" to reduce barriers to oral health care in Wisconsin. To set up a MOM tour (or volunteer) in Madison in June, contact Mara Brooks in the WDA Legislative Office at 608-250-3442.



Happy New Year from the Wisconsin Dental Association!

This Healthy Choices E-Lert provides more information on issues of great importance to our 3,000 members in 2012. Most notably is non-covered services legislation - AB 251 and SB 186 - which would prohibit insurance companies from setting fees for dental services and procedures they don't cover.

Mara Brooks   Mara Brooks, WDA Government Services Director
608-250-3442 or mbrooks@wda.org
WDA Leaders

Steve Stoll, DDS

Tim Durtsche, DDS
La Crosse

Vice President
Julio Rodriguez, DDS

Immediate Past-President
Gene Shoemaker, DDS

Legislative Committee Chair
Eric teDuits, DDS

Wisconsin Dental Political Action Committee Chair
Dave Clemens, DDS
Wisconsin Dells

Executive Director
Mark Paget

Director of Government Services
Mara Brooks

Contract Lobbyist
Peter Christianson
DeWitt Ross & Stevens, S.C.

Contract Lobbyist
Forbes McIntosh
Government Policy Solutions

About the WDA

The WDA, established in 1870, is the dental profession's leading voice in Wisconsin. It has 3,000 member dentists, representing 85 percent of all licensed, practicing dentists in the state.

The WDA pursues a variety of activities and programs relating to advocacy, education, empowerment and service. All programs support the WDA's mission to promote professional excellence and quality oral health care in Wisconsin.


Executive Office: 6737 W. Washington St., Suite 2360, West Allis, WI 53214 | 414-276-4520
Legislative Office: 10 East Doty, Suite 509, Madison, WI 53703 | 608-250-3442
Copyright © 2012 All Rights Reserved.

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