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"Hur mycket tar han fr att dra ut en tand?" frgade Lina.
"Femti re i timmen", sa Alfred.
Men d sa Emil: "Jag tror nog att jag kan f ut tanden bde billigare och fortare. Jag vet sttet."

ur Nr Emil skulle dra ut Linas tand
av Astrid Lindgren

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"Tandvrdscheck, skydd mot hga kostnader och abonnemangstandvrd"
Pressmeddelande, Socialdepartementet 2007-03-06

"Tandvrdsutredningens frslag r fr snlt tilltaget"
Pressmeddelande, Socialdemokraterna 2007-03-06

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Commisson on Dental Service
"Friskare tnder - till rimliga kostnader"
(SOU 2007:19)

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Hard Rain
The web poster with sharp edges

 
Hard Rain    No 26    March 8, 2007
Dental service - a reform worth the name is needed
If everyone shall be able to afford going to the dentist preventive measures must come first. A reform worth the name must include free dental service until the age of 24 and low cost examinations for everybody else.
 
Dental service is the most important election year promise, Hard Rain wrote last spring (no 14, 2006-02-21). We promised to watch how the government is handling the task of putting some life into dental service. Now is the time for a new government to show its colours.

The present proposal from the Commission on Dental Service is not good at all. It will still be too expensive to go to the dentist. But the minister of social affairs, Gran Hgglund, has lost no time to back the proposal.

A cheque for 600 SEK every second year will not entice young people age 20-29 to make regular visits to the dentist. A standard visit with examination and two fillings will cost the same as today, app. 2 800 SEK.

High cost protection is improved. 50 percent subsidy between 3 000 and 15 000 SEK and 85 percent of costs over that level. That is good. But dental service below the cost level 4 000-5 000 SEK is not affected. That is devastating for the preventive service among young adults.



  Socialdemokrats stick to their proposal from last year. The period for free dental service for young people is extended from the age of 19 to 24. Treatment costs over 2 700 SEK are subsidised with 70 percent and costs over 15 000 SEK with 90 percent. Nobody should have to pay more than 200 SEK for an examination.

Conservative media and leftwing columnists alike made fun of this important proposal during last years election campaign. The Swedish people doesnt need help to find the cavities, but to fill them wrote four parliamentarians of the conservative alliance , with the present minister for social security, Christina Husmark Pehrsson, as front name (DN Debatt 2006-04-30). There was no sympathy at all for the fact that the minister of finance, Per Nuder, had placed the dental service reform on top of his agenda (Aftonbladet 2006-08-22).

Families understood the importance of the reform. The lower rate in daycare centres and the dental service reform would show a lot in household economy. "Everybody should be able to go to the dentist, not just those who can afford it", a mother of three in Vnersborg told the Aftonbladet correspondent (2006-08-19).

So this is it. If everyone shall be able to afford going to the dentist, preventive measures must come first. A dental service reform worth the name must include
1) Free dental service for children and youth until the age of 24
2) For everybody else an examination should not cost more than 300 SEK
3) High cost protection is needed, but the level is negotiable.

With a system like that everybody can afford regular visits to the dentist. Dental health will be improved and expensive operations decrease.