FYI

Dentist blog from Delta Dental

Tag: Nevada

Medicare Advantage DHMO updates for 2022

It’s a new year, and that means there’s a new crop of partners joining Medicare Advantage. If you’re part of Delta Dental’s Medicare Advantage DHMO network, members of these groups with a Delta Dental Medicare Advantage DHMO plan can choose your practice as their primary care facility. If you don’t currently participate in this network, we still encourage you to review the following information.

Here’s a quick look at the new Medicare Advantage DHMO partners for 2022.

  • Bright Health covers approximately 7,500 members in Arizona, Illinois, Florida and New York.
  • Brand New Day has over 50,000 members throughout the state of California, from Placer and Sacramento counties in the north all the way down to San Diego and Imperial counties.
  • InterValley Health Plan serves about 17,000 members in the greater Los Angeles metropolitan area, with members in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties.
  • Western Health Advantage covers about 2,300 members in California’s wine country, including Marin, Napa, Sacramento, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo counties.

Additionally, the following Medicare Advantage partnerships are continuing in 2022. Some partners are making changes that may affect the coverage available to your patients. For partners who are updating their benefits, be sure to use Provider Tools to see details!

  • Central Health Medicare Plan in California has expanded to San Mateo County and enhanced their benefits for all divisions.
  • WellCare in California’s Orange and San Diego coverage is continuing DHMO coverage for its members.
  • SCAN Health Plan is expanding to San Mateo and Alameda counties in California.
  • Kaiser California Medicare is adding a new diagnostic and preventive benefit in California counties.
  • Kaiser Georgia Medicare is enhancing benefits and expanding to Newton, Rockdale, Spalding, Walton, Barrow and Butts counties in Georgia.
  • Stanford Healthcare Advantage in California is updating its website but making no changes to its DHMO offering at this time.

Nearly a million members nationwide have access to a Medicare Advantage plan through Delta Dental, and every day for the next decade, about 10,000 Americans will turn 65. By 2030, approximately 18% of the nation’s population will be 65 or older. Joining the Medicare Advantage DHMO network represents an incredible opportunity to expand your business by serving this growing market!

By joining the Medicare Advantage DHMO network, you’ll enjoy the following benefits:

  • Your practice will be listed in our Medicare Advantage network directory.
  • You’ll retain patients who are joining a Medicare Advantage plan. Their DHMO plans require that they visit Medicare Advantage network dentists.
  • You’ll grow your business with new Medicare Advantage patients looking for an in-network dentist.

Interested? To apply for participation in the Delta Dental Medicare Advantage DHMO network, please email medadv@delta.org. We’ll send you an application and contract.

Medicare Advantage PPO updates for 2022

It’s a new year, and that means there’s a new crop of partners joining Medicare Advantage. If you’re part of Delta Dental’s Medicare Advantage PPO network, you can see the members of these groups. And if you haven’t opted in, consider this: every year for the next decade, about 10,000 Americans will turn 65. By 2030, approximately 18% of the nation’s population will be 65 or older. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to expand your business by serving this growing market!

Here’s a quick look at the groups joining us for the first time and updating their plans this year.

  • Alignment Health Plan is a new group with approximately 2,500 members in northern and southern California. Members who choose expanded dental coverage can access the Delta Dental Medicare Advantage PPO network.
  • Aspire Health Plan is backed by Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula and Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System, bringing coverage to Monterey County in California. Beginning in 2022, certain diagnostic and preventive care benefits will be covered at 100%.
  • CDPHP Medicare serves the Capital Region in New York. In 2022, CDPHP will be expanding to St. Lawrence, Lewis and Jefferson counties.
  • CHRISTUS Health Plan offers Medicare Advantage dental coverage in the state of Texas and select areas of New Mexico.
  • Essence Healthcare serves members in the San Francisco Bay Area. Essence Healthcare was previously known as Stanford Healthcare Advantage.
  • Health Choice Utah offers coverage in all counties throughout the state of Utah.
  • Some Molina Healthcare states are moving outside of our network. In 2022, Delta Dental will be partnered with Molina Healthcare in California, Florida, Michigan, Texas and Wisconsin.
  • Select Health Advantage is available in Nevada in Clark and Nye counties.

Nearly a million members nationwide have access to a Medicare Advantage plan through Delta Dental. By joining the Medicare Advantage PPO network, you’ll enjoy the following benefits:

  • Your practice will be listed in our Medicare Advantage network directory
  • You’ll retain patients who are joining a Medicare Advantage plan. Their fee-for-service plans require that they visit Medicare Advantage network dentists.
  • You’ll grow your business with new Medicare Advantage patients looking for an in-network dentist.

Interested? To apply for participation in the Delta Dental Medicare Advantage PPO network, please email medadv@delta.org. We’ll send you an application and contract.

Dentist spotlight: Dr. Naweed Najand

“We saw your dancing video!” may not sound like something you’d expect to hear from patients as they settle into the dentist’s chair. But it’s a phrase Dr. Naweed Najand hears all the time at his Las Vegas practice Smile Vegas Dental.

Dr. Najand and his staff enjoy using social media sites like TikTok to familiarize patients with the practice (and they’re not afraid to bust out a few dance moves in the process). We caught up with Dr. Najand to discuss the power of social media, the challenges of COVID and the ins and outs of practicing dentistry in the entertainment capital of the world.

How and when did you decide to become a dentist?

It was my first year of undergrad. I always wanted to be in medicine, but I didn’t know if was going to go the pre-med route or go into dentistry. My cousin’s husband was a dentist, so I kind of shadowed him. I really liked the whole aspect of treating patients, working with your hands, having your own practice. That was really intriguing to me.

Las Vegas is a pretty unique city. Why did you decide to open your practice there?

I grew up here. My mom’s family is out here. People always ask, “How do you live in Las Vegas?!” But it’s a great city. There’s a lot of opportunity out here. I just grew up here and decided to stay.

From what you know of dentistry in other places, do you feel that practicing dentistry in Vegas is different than in other cities?

I think in terms of service it is. Las Vegas is known for its service industry. The hotels and the customer experience are some of the best in the world. Growing up here, I worked in the casinos on the strip. One of the things I wanted to bring to the dental field is the customer service that you would get at a really nice restaurant or an excellent hotel. In terms of patients, I feel it’s the same. But in terms of what we provide, I try to go above and beyond in giving people good service. That’s what the residents here expect.

What do you love most about being a dentist?

It’s the patient interaction, getting to know your patients, understanding what their needs are and being able to provide that. With dentistry, you really have an impact on people’s confidence and their self-esteem; if they’re in pain, you have the ability to get them out of pain. One of my favorite parts is getting to know the patient, building that trust, having that long-term relationship.

What advice would you give to a young dentist just starting out?

That’s a good question. One piece of advice is: Take as much CDE as possible. Take as many courses as you can. When you get out of dental school, you know enough to do basic dentistry, but there’s so much more involved. One of my favorite things is learning advanced procedures. It makes dentistry a lot more fun, and you’re doing a big service for your patients. It helps you get to the next level. Keep learning.

The second thing is: Try to be confident. Keep working hard to get better. There’ll be days when things don’t go according to plan or you’re dealing with a tough patient. If you work on improving every day, things become a lot easier. You get more confident, and the patients see that.

What do you think are the biggest challenges to the practice of dentistry today?

COVID’s a big one. It’s tough because patients will miss appointments. They’re nervous about coming in. They’re not sure if it’s safe or not.

Another one is building a good team. It’s been tough finding staff. My office just opened last year. We’re at 10 team members, but as we grow, we want to bring on more team members. It takes time.

What do you like to do in your time off?

I like hanging out with friends and family. I enjoy working out. I enjoy going on hikes. We have really beautiful hikes around Las Vegas. I enjoy going camping, as well. But definitely spending time with friends and family. It’s tough because you get so caught up in work. You always have to remind yourself to enjoy the other parts of life.

Your practice is active on TikTok, and it seems like your office staff and patients have a lot of fun participating. What inspired you to make a TikTok page for your practice?

I was never really into it, but I have a lot of younger team members. We started doing these videos. One of the reasons I liked it was because of the team bonding. It’s just fun making these videos together. It helps engage with some of our patients. We have a lot of patients in the 20- to 35-year-old age range. I’m noticing a lot of them on TikTok now. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a patient say, “Oh, we saw your dancing video!” It’s engaging for them, they become familiar with your practice. They see that you’re just normal people, and they feel more welcome. It’s been really huge for us.


Congrats to Dr. Najand! Learn more about his practice Smile Vegas Dental and follow him on TikTok.

Fall 2021 convention and conference schedule

This fall, Delta Dental will be attending conferences and conventions from coast to coast. Swing by our booths to say hi! You can get answers to your questions, enjoy networking opportunities and get informative material created especially for you and your practice.

September 9–11Orlando, FLAmerican Association of Dental Office Management Conference
October 10–13Las Vegas, NVAmerican Dental Association Annual Meeting
November 28 – December 1New York, NYGreater New York Dental Meeting
Table with conference/convention dates from September through December 2021

To stay up to date on the conferences and conventions we’ll be attending, don’t forget to bookmark our “Training and events” page.

Dentist spotlight: Dr. Marc A. Cirelli

Meet Dr. Marc A. Cirelli, DMD, our Dental Health Partner of the Month. Dr. Cirelli is a Reno, Nevada-based dentist whose passion for carpentry and home improvement seamlessly blend with a compassionate approach to helping veterans with dental care, free of charge.

Why did you become a dentist?

I majored in biochemistry, Spanish and history while in college. I found that I really liked dealing with people more than laboratory work. I was also fortunate that my parents owned rental properties. I quickly learned how to become proficient in all of the trades with respect to home improvement. I especially liked framing and other areas of carpentry work. It turns out dentistry is a lot like being a carpenter, but there is still an artistic approach to it.

How long have you been practicing dentistry?

I’ve been practicing dentistry since 2007, graduating from Oregon Health and Science University. When I returned to my home state of Nevada, I worked for three years in a public dental clinic, followed by two years as an associate in private practice. I then purchased my dental practice in December 2012.

What are some of the challenges facing dentistry?

Getting people to recognize the importance of oral health and how it affects other systems of the body is one of the greatest challenges facing dentistry today. I like to use the analogy of a person with severe acne. You see the effects it does to your skin, and you want to clear it up, so you go to a dermatologist. With an oral cavity, people aren’t aware of what happens in the mouth, so they don’t see a dentist until they have a toothache.

We take intraoral photos in an effort to educate patients about the importance of regular dental care. This has been a great motivator for better hygiene and preventive treatment.

What do you do in your spare time?

In my free time, I enjoy running, hiking, skiing, target shooting, martial arts and, of course, home improvement projects.

Tell us one of your funniest stories from the dental office.

As every dentist knows, esthetic cases can be the most challenging. You not only have to meet the patient’s desires but those of their significant other.

In one such case, the patient was in the office for a complete maxillary denture. Esthetics were great: The patient liked the shape, size, form and, most importantly, function of the denture. He’d even provided us with a picture from before he lost his teeth.

We ended up meeting the demands of the patient, but his wife had us redo the denture to meet her demands. She wanted him restored into her ideal husband! I still remember going through the wax try-in and he gave me a look that said, “I like the first, but I need to satisfy her, so go with the second!”

What is most rewarding about your career?

Seeing the results of your work and how it changes a person. Our office works with a program called Adopt a Vet. Since most veterans are not eligible for treatment through the VA, we see veterans on a volunteer basis and do all of their treatment at no charge. They come to the office in pain, and some can’t even chew. We get them out of pain and restore their dentition, often completing dentures so that they can smile and enjoy a good meal again. To me, that’s what dentistry is about.


We’d like to take a moment to congratulate Dr. Cirelli and thank him for the work he does for his community.

To find out more about Dr. Cirelli, visit cirellifamilydentistry.com or check out his Facebook page. You can also learn more about the Nevada Adopt a Vet program.


DeltaCare USA individual plan launched in Nevada

Did you know that dental benefits have a positive effect on patient health? For example, insured patients are 50% more likely to visit the dentist each year than the uninsured.1

Increasing access to dental care is at the core of what we do. That’s why we offer several Delta Dental plan choices for individuals — a DeltaCare® USA plan, now available in eight states and the District of Columbia,2 and two Delta Dental PPO plans.3

These plans help your patients replace plans lost to retirement or job changes. And, it’s easy to enroll online for a basic plan, or one with more inclusive benefits.

Download and save the individual and family plans overview to share with your patients.

Join us! If you’re not in the PPO and/or DeltaCare USA networks, consider joining. You’ll get the maximum in-network benefit payment directly from us, gain more insured patients through our online dentist directory and retain patients who may choose to purchase a closed network plan. Visit our website for more information.


1According to the Delta Dental Oral Health and Well-Being Survey [2014] by Delta Dental Plans Association.

2The closed network, prepaid DeltaCare USA plan is available in CA, DC, FL, MD, NV, NY, PA, TX and UT.

3The open network, fee-for-service PPO plans are available in AL, CA, DC, DE, FL, GA, LA, MD, MS, MT, NV, NY, PA, TX, UT and WV.

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