The Hot List: 2006 Top Dental and Vision Providers
May 29, 2007
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY
The dental and vision plan industries are mature and stable, with a few large companies dominating the markets and reporting slow growth in enrollments and premiums. The top three dental providers listed here provide coverage for 70 million employees and dependents; the top three vision providers cover 104 million. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 46 percent of all U.S. workers have access to dental benefits and 29 percent have access to vision benefits. Dental insurance premiums for employer-sponsored plans rose 2.7 percent in 2006 for single coverage and 3.7 percent for family coverage, according to the National Association of Dental Plans. Employer costs for dental and vision plans remain low because both industries rely on high employee co-pays, high volume and primary-care-only provisions. High overall benefits costs, however, continue to fuel employer interest in converting traditional employer-paid dental and vision plans into consumer-directed offerings, discount plans and voluntary benefit plans. .
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