Differences in patterns of access to dental care between teenage cardholders and non‑cardholders became more evident between 2002 and 2008. During this period cardholders were less likely than non‑cardholders to visit the dentist annually and to visit for the purpose of a check‑up, although these differences were not always statistically significant.
Despite these differences in visiting patterns, the proportion of cardholders receiving an extraction was similar to that reported by non‑cardholders in all years except 2008. However, from 1999 onwards teenage cardholders were more likely than non‑cardholders to have received a filling in the previous 12 months, although differences by cardholder status were usually small and not statistically significant.
Since 2005 a higher proportion of cardholders reported that cost was a barrier to receiving timely dental care, although differences by cardholder status were not statistically significant.