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Guardian Expands Dental HMO/Pre-Paid Coverage
Date:12/3/2008

New Options Help Business Owners and Employees Manage Benefit Costs

NEW YORK, Dec. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian), a leading provider of employee and voluntary benefits for small and mid-sized companies, today announced enhancements to its dental HMO (DHMO) plans that will broaden access to more affordable treatment options for business owners and employees.

Guardian has one of the largest Dental PPO networks in the country and there was demand from brokers and employers for a wider offering of Guardian products and services via an enhanced DHMO network. The DHMO improvements will create a common design across Guardian's HMO and PPO dental plans.

"As medical costs continue to rise, employers want more choices at a wide range of price points to ensure that their employees have access to dental benefits," said Chris Swanker, vice president, Guardian Group Dental. "Some employers will want to offer their employees affordable benefits with maximum provider choice through a PPO network and others want to focus on lower cost through an HMO network. When you choose Guardian Dental via a PPO or HMO you will have access to rich benefits and leading edge dental services and coverage."

Guardian's Enhanced Managed DentalGuard HMO plan coverage includes:

  • Preventive procedures such as oral cancer screenings and adult fluoride treatments
  • Cosmetic teeth whitening
  • General anesthesia for oral surgery procedures
  • An increase in the number of annual periodontal cleanings to four without evidence of medical need
  • A continuation of benefits for orthodontic treatment for people whose treatment was still in progress when they switched DHMO carriers

In addition, Guardian will pick up the cost of office visit copayments for members and their dependents once a plan has been in force for three years-an added benefit designed to reward persistency and promote dental office visits, which can result in better oral health and, over the long run, save money for both employers and employees by avoiding the necessity of treating more complex problems that can arise without regular preventive care.

Added Swanker, "Business owners recognize the value of dental insurance as a cost-effective way to minimize health care costs for themselves and their employees. Despite the current economic environment, dental insurance is a relatively low cost, popular and highly valued benefit. The enhancement on our DHMO offering will only help to make important coverage that promotes oral health available to a wider population."

The new DHMO plans are currently available in California, Missouri, New York, Indiana, Florida and Illinois.

Guardian specializes in providing employee benefits to small and mid-size companies. Guardian serves more than 120,000 employers, and 6 million employees and their families. The company has issued a series of educational surveys and reports to help employees, employers and benefit decision makers better understand how they can jumpstart their financial lives and improve employee recruitment, retention and satisfaction by maximizing the use and power of their workplace coverage. Five reports currently available in the series include:

  • Benefits & Behavior: Spotlight on Group Critical Illness Insurance
  • Benefits & Behavior: Spotlight on Group Medical
  • Benefits & Behavior: Spotlight on Dental
  • Benefits & Behavior: Spotlight on Group Life and Disability Insurance
  • Benefits & Behavior: The Voice of American Business Owners and Benefit Decision Makers Today

The reports can be found at www.GuardianBenefits.com.

About Guardian

Founded in 1860, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, NY (Guardian) is one of the largest mutual life insurance companies in the United States. As of December 31, 2007, Guardian and its subsidiaries had $41.3 billion in assets (on a consolidated statutory basis). With close to 3,000 financial representatives and 80 agencies nationwide, Guardian and its subsidiaries protect individuals, small business owners, and their employees with life, disability, health, long-term care, and dental insurance products, and offer 401(k), annuities, and other financial products and trust services. Specializing in the small to mid-size business market, Guardian's Group business unit serves more than 120,000 employers, 6 million employees, and their families. More information about Guardian can be obtained at: www.GuardianLife.com.


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SOURCE The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America
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