CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee is giving Tennesseans more reasons to smile. With the introduction of DentalBlueTM plans, employers can offer their employees expanded coverage options to meet their dental care needs.

Effective Oct. 1, both fully insured and self-funded groups can take advantage of the new plans, which replace BlueCross’ Preferred Dental Care plans.

DentalBlue is designed to provide choice and control costs for businesses and their employees. The product’s multi-option approach allows individuals to choose from two or more plans featuring a variety of coinsurance, deductibles, and benefit maximums. Covered care includes services like exams, X-rays, cleanings, basic and major restorative services and orthodontics.

Besides the flexibility in the plans, DentalBlue features a new nationwide network of nearly 60,000 dentists through DenteMax, a credentialed dental PPO network owned by BlueCross BlueShield of Michigan.

“DentalBlue offers members lots of new choices. New plan and network options help members stretch the dental benefit dollar, increasing savings for both the group and employees,” said Susan Emmett, product manager for BlueCross.

Although DentalBlue can be purchased as a stand-alone with another group health plan, employers can elect to add DentalBlue to an existing BlueCross plan for added convenience.

According to Emmett, the combination of DentalBlue and a BlueCross health plan allows seamless coordination of benefits such as combined billing, single-source customer and account services and the ease of one membership ID card.

“Dental care is an important part of an individual’s overall health care plan. Good oral health can prevent conditions and diseases that can not only adversely affect a person’s health but also his or her economic productivity,” Emmett said. “DentalBlue helps to encourage good dental health while making that care easy to coordinate and, most importantly, more affordable.”

About DenteMax

Founded in 1985, DenteMax is dedicated to providing clients with the best total cost solutions to support their benefits strategies. With nearly 60,000 dentist access points nationwide, DenteMax is the nation’s largest true leasable dental PPO network. DenteMax works with hundreds of major Insurers, Third Party Administrators and Taft-Hartley Trust groups, serving more than 3.5 million members nationwide. DenteMax became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan in 2002. Additional information about DenteMax is available at www.dentemax.com.

About BlueCross

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee's mission is to provide its customers and communities with peace of mind through affordable solutions for health and healing, life and living. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on reinventing the health plan for its 3 million members in Tennessee and across the country. Through its integrated health management approach, BlueCross provides patient-centric products and services that drive health improvement and positively impact health care quality and value. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company's website at www.bcbst.com.