Nevaeh Hall

Nevaeh Hall

The owners of a chain of dental surgery centers are renewing calls for the state to immediately stop the practices of Houston’s largest Medicaid insurance provider.

The tragic severe brain injury to four-year old Nevaeh Hall has highlighted the dangers family’s face. The Texas health commissioner must immediately improve access to care.

“We all know what happened to Nevaeh is an unnecessary tragedy,” says Dr. Craig Jacobs, owner of Children 1st Dental and Surgery Centers. “We want the health commissioner to protect other Nevaehs and their parents to make sure they have access to good care.”

Months before Nevaeh was left severely brain damaged, Children 1st sounded alarm bells about reduced access to care for under privileged children in certified dental surgery centers.

More than 600,000 Medicaid eligible children are insured through just one company in Houston. The company is Texas Children Health Insurance Plan. TCHP has given the list of facilities it claims provides dental care as a way of keeping other surgical centers out. Many of those facilities in fact do not perform dental procedures. Some parents are forced to drive their children more than 100 miles for proper dental care. That is just wrong. The state has known this for months.

Children 1st says greed on two fronts is the direct cause of this injustice.

“First, we have improperly trained dentists medicating children, putting them in restraints so they can profit from dental work,” says Jacobs. “It is dangerous when the state health commissioner allows an insurance giant like TCHP to restrict access to qualified dental surgical centers.

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