HIV and Dental Health

People who are living with HIV in the ACT are able to access dental services through this unique program being offered in partnership with the AIDS Action Council (the Council) and ACT Dental Health Program (DHP)  

Who is eligible?

  • Holder or dependent of a current Centrelink concession card (Pensioner or Healthcare Card)
  • Resident of the ACT
  • HIV Positive
  • Referral by the Council

HOW IT WORKS

The Council will need to share clients’ personal and medical information with the DHP. As such, clients will need to complete a service agreement form to access the program.

Clients with serious health conditions, particularly those who suffer from poor dental health which adversely impacts on their general wellbeing, can gain further priority access through a referral letter provided by their General Practitioner (GP) or S100 prescriber.

The DHP will liaise with the Council regarding clients on all aspects of the program including missed appointments and ensure that clients successfully complete all courses of care.

Clients with the most urgent and complex treatment needs will be placed on recall after an initial clinical assessment. Clients deemed not urgent will have a plan of service according to DHP Policy.

5 EASY STEPS TO DENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT:

  1. To access the service you need to be a client of the Council.
  2. Complete a service agreement
  3. The Council provides a referral to DHP and will share personal and medical information (including doctor’s letter if appropriate) with DHP
  4. DHP assesses the client’s need for services
  5. DHP contacts the client with either a clinical assessment visit and a schedule of follow-up appointments (A), or a plan of service (B)

WHAT’S THE COST?

The HIV dental program is currently free until 30 June 2017 or until further notice. Please note that if you access the emergency dental service without using the HIV Dental Health Program you may incur additional costs.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I CHOOSE TO ACCESS THE GENERAL DENTAL PROGRAM OR THE EMERGENCY DENTAL SERVICE?

Anyone living in the ACT and a holder or dependent of a current Centrelink concession card (Pensioner or Healthcare Card) can access the general dental health program which includes the emergency dental health service. For urgent dental treatment, phone the clinic first for an assessment over the phone. You do not need to go into the clinic in person (this can save time and possibly an unnecessary trip). Those with the most urgent problems will be offered an appointment. Clients with non-urgent dental needs will be placed on a waiting list.

Emergency dental services are provided Monday to Friday (except public holidays). A limited Saturday morning emergency clinic is available at the Phillip Dental Clinic only. In accessing any of these services please take your Centrelink concession card to each appointment and details of any medications you are currently taking.

 

DENTAL CLINIC CONTACTS

Belconnen Dental Clinic

56 Lathlain Street, Belconnen

Phone (02) 6205 1541 or 6205 1202

Civic Dental Clinic

Level 1, 1 Moore Street, Canberra City

Phone (02) 6205 0977 or (02) 6205 0978

Gungahlin Dental Clinic

Cnr Ernest Cavanagh & Fussell Lane, Gungahlin

Phone (02) 6207 4547

Phillip Dental Clinic

Cnr Corinna & Keltie Streets, Phillip

Phone (02) 6205 1463 or (02) 6205 1695

Tuggeranong Child & Youth Dental Clinic

Cnr Anketell & Pitman Streets, Tuggeranong

Phone (02) 6205 2768 or (02) 6205 0585

 

 

If you are not eligible to access the ACT HIV Dental Health Program the following options may be of assistance:

  • Talk to your GP to see if they have a professional relationship with a dentist who would understand your needs and work with you for the best outcomes.
  • Consider Private Health Insurance (PHI) - There are different types of cover that offer different benefits. Check with your health fund to be sure of exactly what you are covered for as there are often exclusions or waiting periods before you can claim for certain procedures. Remember PHI does not cover all your costs so you will still be out of pocket. Contact the Client Services Team at the Council who can talk with you about dentists who have been recommended by other PLWH. Finding the extra funds to help pay for ongoing dental treatment can be difficult, Step up may be an option 

STEPUP LOW INTEREST LOANS

StepUP provides low interest loans to people on low incomes through community providers across many parts of Australia. StepUP is an initiative of Good Shepherd Microfinance in partnership with National Australia Bank (NAB).

WHO CAN USE STEPUP?

StepUP loans are for individuals or families holding a current Centrelink Concession Card or receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A. Individuals or families are also required to have lived at their current address for more than three months.

WHAT DOES STEPUP OFFER?

StepUP offers loans of between $800 and $3000 for personal or household purposes such as medical and dental expenses. Interest is charged at a fixed low rate and loans can be repaid over three years. No fees apply. The loan is provided by NAB and is subject to NAB’s credit assessment. Terms and conditions apply. For further information call (02) 6195 3168.

Don’t have a health care card or private insurance and earning less than $60,000 a year? We may be able to help you, please call and have a chat. Enquiries should be made to the Client Services Coordinator on (02) 6257 2855. If you have any questions in relation to this information please contact the Client Services Team of the AIDS Action Council.

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