Is Dental Care Free for Kids in Australia?

Tooth decay in children is a growing problem in Australia. Regular dental visits improve the chance that decay can be spotted early before it causes serious damage or tooth loss. Dentists can also offer guidance for children and their parents about the best way to care for their developing teeth and gums.

With dental check-ups being so important for children's oral health, many parents naturally worry about the cost. The Child Dental Benefits Schedule (CDBS) was introduced by the Australian Government in 2014 to help cover some of the costs of children's dentistry for eligible families, making sure that more children have access to quality dental care.

Dental Care for Kids

Am I eligible for CDBS?

Around 3 million children in Australia are eligible for CDBS. To qualify, you must:

  • be responsible for children or teenagers aged 2 to 17 years old
  • be eligible to receive Family Tax Benefit Part A or another Medicare payment
  • receive these payments at least 1 day out of the calendar year

You can find out more by visiting the Services Australia website.

What does CDBS cover?

CDBS covers up to $1,000 of basic children's dentistry over 2 calendar years. If the child is still eligible for CDBS at the end of that period, the benefit cap is reset.

This includes dental check-ups, teeth cleaning and dental x-rays along with general treatments such as white fillings, fissure sealants and tooth extraction.

More complex dental services such as orthodontics and hospitalisations are not covered by CDBS.

How do I make a claim?

If you are eligible for CDBS, you should talk to your dental clinic and let them know that you intend to make a claim. You need to have enough balance remaining in your CDBS account, otherwise you may need to pay the difference up front.

If your dentist bulk bills payments, they can take care of your claim for you and you won't have to do anything. If they don't bulk bill, you will need to submit your claim to Medicare to be reimbursed. This can be done online, through the Express Plus Medicare mobile app or by posting a claim form.

What does my health fund cover?

As well as CDBS, your family may be covered by your health fund if you have private health insurance. It's important to check your policy limits so you know what treatments are covered and whether you'll be covered for the whole cost or only part of the cost.

Generally, basic dental cover will include examinations, teeth cleaning and some general treatments such as fillings. Make sure you bring your health fund card to your appointment, or your dental clinic won't be able to process your claim.

Talk to our kids' dentists in Everton Park and Mitchelton

To find out more about claiming kids' dentistry free on CDBS and other ways to save on your dental bills, contact our friendly team at Swish Dental Centre.

Call our dentists in Everton Park on (07) 3355 1422 or our Mitchelton practice on (07) 3354 3341.

 
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