(a) Each employer or other organization which contributes to a group health insurance contract or dental benefit plan covering twenty-five (25) or more persons, which restricts the covered persons in selecting the providers of dental care services to a single dentist or limited number of dentists, shall also offer its employees or eligible dependents at the time a dental benefits plan is offered or renewed at least one alternative cover of comparable benefits which permits covered persons to obtain dental care services from the licensed dentist of their choice if the alternate coverage is proposed to the employer or other organization by either an insurance company licensed to do business in the state of Rhode Island or a hospital, medical, or dental service corporation chartered in the state of Rhode Island. The licensed dentist shall conform to the quality assurance, utilization, and review programs of the party providing alternative coverage.
(b) The employer or other organization shall pay or contribute for the employee or member for the provision of alternative coverage, an amount equal to the lesser of:
(1) The premium or cost which it pays or contributes for the employee or member to the group health insurance contract or dental benefit plan which limits the number of providers of dental services; or
(2) The actual cost or premium of the alternate coverage obtained by the employee or member.
(P.L. 1986, ch. 163, § 1.)