The photo-based app and virtual consult teledentistry options are designed to give certain Delta Dental members greater access to oral healthcare service.

Delta Dental of California and its affiliates have announced two new teledentistry offerings that enable plan members the option to receive preventive oral healthcare consultation remotely. These virtual dentistry tools allow for virtual access to care for Delta Dental of California PPO and Delta Dental Premier plan members to network dental professionals. This virtual expert advice is delivered through video conferencing platforms and smartphone applications, and is available as a covered benefit on an ongoing basis.

The first offering is a photo-based app that offers virtual dental screenings from a Delta Dental of California dental provider for non-urgent issues. After members download the app and complete a short form, they are guided through taking six photos of different areas of their teeth, gums, and areas of concern. The photos are then automatically routed through a HIPAA-compliant channel to a practitioner who will provide a personalized report within 24 hours.

For more urgent needs or when members would like to speak with a Delta Dental of California dental professional, the Virtual Consult option is a secure video-based tool that connects members and providers directly. After an initial discussion to learn more about the dental issue, a practitioner will guide the member through a virtual oral exam and provide treatment options and prescriptions, if necessary.

According to the company, in addition to providing added flexibility for many patients, teledentistry offers an important assessment option for those with a disability, elderly members who struggle with mobility, those who live in rural areas with limited dental clinics in their region, and members seeking a second opinion.