Access to Dental Care Is a Growing Challenge for Employees: Onsite Mobile Dentistry Is the Solution

Access to dental care. Let that phrase sink in for a moment. When people talk about mobile dentistry, the first term that usually comes to mind is “convenience.” Sure, having a dental team visit your employees at the workplace is tremendously expedient. Onsite mobile dentistry is an innovative solution that bolsters your business’ wellness programs along with increases in performance, morale, staff retention, and more. But if we look at the nature of work today, access to dental care remains a challenge that many companies haven’t considered. Your employees live farther away from their offices than in decades past. They also work much longer hours than their predecessors. One simple toothache can lead to a lot of lost productivity. Bringing the dentist to your doorstep is giving your talent access to the oral healthcare they need. 

Access to Dental Care Complicated by Geographic Barriers

Gusto is a popular online payroll, benefits, and human resource management platform. In March, the company analyzed data covering more than 300,000 small and mid-sized businesses. It found that since 2019, “the share of workers living more than 50 miles from their employer rose more than five-fold, from 0.8% to 5.5%.” Here are some other key findings from the report.

  • Compared to 2019 levels, employees’ average distance from their home to their employer has risen 2.7x: The mean distance to work rose from 10 miles in 2019 to 27 miles at the end of 2023.
  • Millennials are leading the way in living farther from their employers: Employees 30-39 years old live the farthest away from their employer, and the distance has risen the most among this group. The distance to work has risen 2.9x among 35-39-year-olds (from 10 to 29 miles) and 2.8x among 30-34-year-olds (from 11 to 31 miles), a sign that this group is taking advantage of the flexibility remote and hybrid work provides as they reach parenting age.
  • By the end of December 2023, workers hired since the pandemic work an average of 35 miles from their employer, compared to 16 miles among workers who were hired before the pandemic hit.

Remote Work and Return to the Office

The pandemic played a big part in the issue of access to dental care. With the sudden rise and rapid adoption of remote work, employees discovered that they could perform their duties effectively without commuting to their offices. This allowed them to move away from expensive cities to more affordable areas for a greater quality of life. It also gave them the time to focus on their oral health, evident in the 11% growth of dental visits since 2021. Yet, with return-to-work mandates, those same employees now find themselves in a bind. 

Dental Problems Impact Productivity and Profits

One of the most severe hits to a company’s bottom line comes from a sudden drop in productivity. And working adults in the United States miss more than 243 million hours of productivity time each year due to oral health problems, according to findings from CareQuest Institute’s State of Oral Health Equity in America survey. 

  • Untreated dental diseases cost the U.S. businesses an estimated $45 billion each year in lost productivity time.
  • Adults missed 183 million hours of productivity time because of oral pain or unplanned dental visits.
  • Workers also missed 60 million hours taking care of children or other family members who experienced a dental emergency.

The figures speak for themselves. Without access to dental care, particularly preventative services, lingering oral health problems can erupt into full-scale emergencies that disrupt the smooth operation and performance of any company. This is precisely where onsite mobile dentistry makes a profound difference.

Giving Your Employees Access to Dental Care on Demand

Long hours and increasingly longer commute times have forced people to make tough choices about priorities; they can squeeze only so many activities into the sparse free time that remains. For many groups in the workforce, the problem is more pronounced. Employees who must live farther away from the office – because of financial constraints, housing costs, community resources and safety, or family obligations – have less time at their disposal, which means forgoing regular dental checkups. However, by putting their oral health at risk, they are also jeopardizing their overall physical and mental wellbeing.

That also means they’re at high risk of potential dental emergencies that will lead to unplanned time off. Bringing the dentist to your office is a convenient and simple way to overcome obstacles that employees too often confront in accessing dental care.

  • Accessibility: Onsite services eliminate the need for employees to take significant time off work to visit a dentist. Appointments can be scheduled during work hours, making it easier for employees to get the care they need without sacrificing income or work time.
  • Cost Reduction: Mobile onsite dental services can reduce costs associated with travel and time off work. This can make dental care more affordable and accessible.
  • Preventative Care and Early Intervention: Regular visits from mobile dental teams can encourage preventive care and early treatment of dental issues. This helps reduce the incidence of more severe and costly dental problems down the line, as employees are more likely to utilize dental services if they are readily available​.
  • Education and Awareness: Mobile dental services can provide educational resources and raise awareness about the importance of oral health by providing workshops and materials to help employees understand the link between oral health and overall health, which promotes better dental hygiene practices​.
  • Customizable Solutions: Mobile dental clinics can offer a range of services, from basic cleanings and check-ups to more complex procedures. They can be tailored to meet the specific needs of your workforce, ensuring that a variety of dental health issues are addressed.

Onsite dental services can significantly mitigate many of the barriers that employees face in accessing dental care, leading to improved oral health outcomes.

Dentists on Demand

Dentists on Demand (DOD) helped pioneer corporate mobile dentistry solutions. As we have seen across all of our clients, a corporate mobile dentistry solution can be a win-win for businesses of all types across industries, promoting a healthier and happier workforce while potentially reducing costs and improving operational efficiency.

All you have to do is schedule a pop-up and find an available conference room or unoccupied space for us to use. Seriously, that’s it.

  • We handle the setup and breakdown of our mobile dental suite and all equipment. We utilize the latest technologies in teledentistry, digital imaging, the highest-end portable equipment, and sterilization processes that are rated at hospital grade.
  • We create a branded microsite to market the service to employees and inform them of everything they need to know in advance.
  • We provide access to CUSPID, our proprietary dental technology platform, which enables employees to manage everything from booking appointments to accessing their own patient records and more.
  • With all Dental PPO plans, our preventative services are covered at 100%, promoting the utilization of a benefit that is completely subsidized yet under-utilized. 
  • Our rates reflect the same in-network costs employers already pay, whether their models are self-funded or PEPM. 
  • We customize our solutions to meet the unique needs of your team members, work culture, and site requirements. We also work with plan administrators and carriers to develop lists of in-network providers that we can refer employees to when additional treatment is recommended.

Why not schedule your first pop-up today? Or if you want to learn more about onsite mobile dentistry, we have all the information you need.

Scroll to Top