Monday, April 21, 2008

Humana Dental Plans Now Include Oral-Cancer Screening for Reimbursement

Humana is now offering coverage for oral cancer screening with ViziLite Plus with TBlue630. No word on if they are also covering screenings done with Velscope at this time. Here is the full story:

HumanaDental Insurance Co., part of the Humana Specialty Benefits family of supplemental benefits offered by Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM), will provide oral-cancer screening to HumanaDental members (age 40 and older) enrolled in the company's fully insured dental plans.

"One person dies of oral cancer every hour in the United States," said Mark Matzke, chief operating officer, HumanaDental. "Because early detection is the key to fighting this disease, we're pleased to offer this coverage as part of our commitment to promoting oral health, which is directly linked to overall health."

"ViziLite® Plus with TBlue630" - the cancer-screening procedure - is simple, quick, pain-free and effective. HumanaDental will cover the screening once a year beginning April 1, 2008.

An annual ViziLite Plus exam, after a conventional visual examination, represents an integral part of comprehensive oral-cancer screenings. The screenings help dentists detect oral cancer in its early stages, as well as precancerous tissue.

After the patient rinses with a special solution, the dentist examines the mouth with a disposable light stick. Under the light, abnormal tissue appears bright white; the dentist marks it with a temporary dye called TBlue630.

A recently published clinical study revealed that using ViziLite Plus with TBlue630 detected 100 percent of cancers and lesions at highest risk of becoming cancer. Oral cancer is found primarily in tobacco users or heavy drinkers, but new research shows a common strain of the sexually transmitted HPV virus also accounts for a significant percentage of all oral cancer cases in the U.S.

ViziLite Plus with TBlue630 is a product of Zila Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ZILA); more information is available at www.vizilite.com. To learn more about oral cancer, visit www.oralcancerfoundation.org.

Source: Medical News Today

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