Fourteen percent of Icelanders who need to see a dentist skip doing so due to the cost, the highest rate of any OECD country, according to the recently published Health at a Glance 2013 report.
Dental costs in Iceland are among the highest in the OECD countries. Patients are responsible for eighty-two percent of dental costs in Iceland.
Head of the Dentist Association of Iceland, Kristín Heimisdóttir, told ruv.is that Iceland’s standing will likely change now that a new dental plan offering children regular checkups, preventative measures and other necessary treatment free of charge has started to be rolled out. The data used in the latest report is from 2011.
Kristín told ruv.is that the numbers are surprising and suspects that cost isn’t the only factor. “There are quite a few people who are afraid of going to the dentist, not just because of a past negative experience, but also because they are afraid to find out about their condition when they to the dentist in pain.”
Italy, Portugal, Poland and Sweden follow Iceland on the list.
According to the report, it is more common for people to skip seeing a dentist than a doctor.