There is a dire need for upgrading dental infrastructure to improve accessibility and affordability by the poor in India looking at the statistics released by National Health Profile 2019 and WHO through various publications. At ground level, an inadequate number of doctors per population (1:10,926) and no standardization of dental treatment prices across cities have been restricting the penetration of dental care.
Why there is no Standalone Dental Insurance Company in India?
In 2015, Ocare, a Mumbai based company, was the first-ever company to launch dental insurance products in association with ICICI Lombard & New India Assurance. However, owing to scalability challenges & regulations by IRDA, the partnership couldn’t succeed and Ocare decided to pause its operations. In December 2017, Ocare applied for a license as a Standalone Health Insurance Provider and to date (Jan 2020), is awaiting the same.
‘Lack of data collection by dentists, fragmented nature of dentistry practice and lack of financial inclusion was the common challenges faced by us back in 2016’, said Dr. Neeraj Sheth, Founder and Group Director at Ocare talking to Ken Research, India. He further emphasized on the bureaucratic challenges being currently faced by the company to obtain necessary licenses before launching their products.
Where does India stand today?
With marketing efforts from Chain clinics coming up in top cities of India, the population is becoming aware of the need to maintain oral care and undergo preventive treatment on a regular basis. Introduction of government schemes such as Ayushman Bharat Yojana, eDant Seva, etc. are welcoming steps aimed at affordable and accessible healthcare. Yet, there is still a long way to meet the standards set by developed regions.
Is it the right time to enter Dental Insurance in India?
“Mismatch between demand and supply of dental services and non-existence of such product to date paves the way for the entry of Dental Insurance because demand is there”, said Dr. Sheth. During its operations in 2016-17, Ocare received tremendous response from dentists and sold more than 100,000 policies. In popular health insurance plans such as Apollo Munich Maxima Plan, Bharti AXA Smart Health, dental treatments find limited coverage and do not cover routine treatment charges.
It is expected that the existence of India dental insurance products would prompt customers from top cities of Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi NCR and Mumbai to pursue preventive treatment over sick treatment. Higher adoption rates could also bring in the innovative technology and dental medical equipment capable of detecting fatal diseases such as Oral Cancer at early stages.
Companies Mentioned: –
Apollo White Dental
Health Insurance Companies
Dental Insurance Company
Key Topics Covered in the Report: –
Number of Chain Clinics in India
Number of Dental Surgeons registered with Dental Council of India
Role of Chain Clinics Dental Insurance in India
Business Model of Clove Dental
India Healthcare Sector Growth
Number of Dentists in India
Latest Updates Dental Council of India
Coverage Dental Insurance India
Comparison of Top 6 Health Insurance Providers in India
Indian Healthcare Industry Size in USD Million
Number of Medical Colleges and Doctors in India
Major Health Insurance Companies in India
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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications