The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting every part of our lives, and we're responding in a variety of ways to support our employees, customers, network dentists, and our fellow South Dakotans.
To ensure the health and safety of our employees and support public health efforts, we’ve adjusted operations to reduce exposure risk and still provide the quality service you expect.
Our offices are closed to the general public and many staff are working remotely as we serve our members, network dentists, clients, and brokers. You're welcome to contact us by phone or email or sign in to your account on our website.
Our Foundation's community-based programs that provide dental care for kids (our mobile clinic trucks and preventive care clinics), school-based classroom education, and other outreach at public events were suspended until July 6. Our Mobile Program has resumed care with added new protocols and equipment to keep patients and staff safe, but other public education and outreach has not yet resumed.
We're working to be as flexible as possible with plan holders to ensure they can maintain their dental benefits through the pandemic or resume them as easily as possible in the future. Special pandemic accommodations are available for group plan purchasers and individual/family plan purchasers.
Plan benefits have also been enhanced. Starting July 1, 2020, our Prevention Pays feature is now included in all fully insured dental benefit plans. On average, the feature extends an additional $500 in coverage every year!
To support our dental care partners, we've created two financial support programs for advance payments and no-interest, forgiveable loans to help dental practices through the disruption in providing care. Reimbursement to dentists for exams were increased an average of 6% to help offset new PPE needs, and we are now covering diganostic teledentistry exams.
The DDSD Foundation donated a total of $400,000 to support food distribution and other community-based relief efforts during the pandemic. A $200,000 donation to Feeding South Dakota and a $200,000 donation to the South Dakota Community Foundation's Coronavirus Response Fund were made to help people across the state.
We can still smile at each other.
We believe in the power of a smile. It can be comforting and inspiring. During these stressful times, we hope you’ll take a moment to share your smile with someone today.
We’re all in this together, and we’re proud to be your partners in oral health.
It’s important to maintain good oral health at home, prevent tooth decay, and keep cavities at bay during the COVID-19 pandemic.
* The pandemic and public health response continues to evolve. Information from the CDC, the SD Dept. of Health, and other public health and oral health profession organizations is guiding our response. We'll adapt as needed, and any updates will be provided and noted on this webpage. Originally posted March 19, 2020. Updated March 26, 2020 to reflect community program cancelations extended through May 1. Updated April 7, 2020 with links to dental plan accommodations and extension of community program cancellations to June 1. Updated April 14, 2020 with information on Foundation donations to relief efforts, and support for dental practices. Updated May 20, 2020 to reflect cancelation of Mobile Program events to July 6. Updated June 16, 2020 to include link to new Mobile Program safety protocols. Updated July 7, 2020 to include Prevention Pays plans enhancement. Updated March 8, 2021 with edits to reflect the current state of operations and ongoing nature of the pandemic.