Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Elizabeth Berry

Second Advisor

Tegwyn Brickhouse


Purpose: To assess the effect of dental Medicaid reforms in the state of Virginia on dental plan performance. Methods: This project is a retrospective cohort study of 825,000 dental claims obtained from the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services. This cohort includes dental claims for children enrolled in Virginia’s Medicaid program from July 1, 2002 through June 30, 2008. The independent variable was enrollment pre or post policy reform with July 1, 2005 as the period dividing date. The dependent variable was dental benefit utilization measured as the average number of restorative, preventative, and total procedures. Statistical methods include Welch’s t-test and repeated measures mixed model ANOVA controlling for gender, race, age, length of enrollment, gaps in patient enrollment, citizenship status, and geographic location. Results: This cohort of data showed a significant increase in the total number of procedures utilized by enrolled children (P value < 0.001). There were also significant increases in restorative services across all periods of enrollment. Conclusion: The consolidation of Virginia’s multiple managed care programs into a single vendor with increased reimbursement levels resulted in increased in access to care and improved utilization of dental services for children enrolled in Medicaid.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

May 2011

Included in

Dentistry Commons