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Dollars and Dentists (full documentary)

Frontline, 19 Jan 2022
Dental care can be a matter of life or death. Yet millions of Americans either don’t have dental insurance or simply can’t afford to see a dentist. The result? Severe pain, preventable disease, humiliation, bankruptcy and sometimes even death. (Aired 2012)

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In a 2012 joint investigation by FRONTLINE and the Center for Public Integrity, correspondent Miles O’Brien uncovers the shocking consequences of a broken dental care system. Poor children, entitled by law to dental care, often cannot find a dentist willing to see them. Others kids receive excessive care billed to Medicaid, or major surgery for preventable tooth infections. For adults with dental disease, the situation can be just as dire and bankrupting. While millions of Americans use emergency rooms for dental care, corporate dental chains are filling the gaps in care, and in some cases have allegedly overcharged patients or loaded them with high priced credit card debt.

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