Dental and Vision

Quick Facts

  • Penn’s dental plan is superior to NYU’s (only unionized private school) dental plan
  • While GET-UP could bargain for free dental, it is still cheaper than paying several hundred in union dues
  • Dental coverage could change if dental insurance becomes free (less coverage, only able to be seen by dental students like NYU)
  • Coverage for vision did not change under unionization at NYU, and it is similar to Penn’s insurance

In-depth Overview

The union claims that our dental and vision plan is insufficient, but have not stated what  GET-UP frequently states that the NYU union won free dental insurance, but NYU’s unionized dental plan has significantly worse coverage in nearly every category than Penn’s plan.

Benefit Penn Dental (No Union) NYU Dental (Union)
Locations 3 1
Provider Certified Dentists (D.D.S) Students in training
Diagnostic and Preventive Care 100% (Two cleanings/exams per year, includes X-Rays) 100% (Two cleanings/exams per year, includes X-Rays)
Restorative Care 80% 100%
Oral Surgery 80% (Also covered under student insurance) 0-20%
Endodontics & Periodontics 80% 0-20%
Prosthodontics 50% 0-20%
Implant Surgery 50% 0-20%
Orthodontics 50% (Includes Invisalign) 10%
Occlusal Nightguards 50% 0-20%
Annual Coverage $1500 N/A
Annual Deductible $50 N/A

While Penn’s plan does cost $200, it has more benefits than a union plan, and it is still cheaper than paying $700 a year in union dues. It is also important to remember that bargaining requires give-and-take from each side. If GET-UP does succeed at achieving free dental, our coverage could decrease and/or we could only be seen by students in training (like NYU).

Dental insurance plans typically have a $1500 limit and most people do not reach that limit. Very rarely will students or other people need more than $1500, but a dental discount plan through Aetna is an attractive option. Dental discount plans gives 50% off many dental procedures (including root canals), allowing for students to minimize costs while still receiving the dental care they need. No insurance plan is perfect, but Penn’s insurance provides the care that the vast majority of students will want or need.

Once again, our vision coverage is better than what the NYU union bargained for. We are able to see almost any eye doctor in Philadelphia whereas NYU graduate students are limited to the student clinic. It is important to note that even with a union, NYU graduate students still have to pay 10% of their healthcare insurance, whereas Penn fully covers our costs.

Penn (No Union) NYU (Union)
Health Insurance Cost $0 $269.70
Coverage 90% (Eye and Contact Exam) 100%
Location Numerous eye doctors in Philadelphia 1 (Student health clinic)
Eye Glasses and Contacts No No