About the Grant
Support to the Illinois Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics as part of the Oral Health 2014 Initiative. Illinois has many elements of a strong oral health infrastructure: widespread community water fluoridation, active dental and medical societies, state and local oral health improvement plans with engaged stakeholders, and specific efforts to improve service delivery such as infrastructure grants to clinics, provision of fluoride varnish in the medical home, and more. However, additional planning and stakeholder engagement will help Illinois better address the U.S. National Oral Health Alliance priority areas around public health infrastructure, literacy, and prevention efforts, particularly for young children. The Illinois Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics (ICAAP) will bring together a diverse group of stakeholders in early childhood health, education, and community/social service programs to coordinate statewide activity and develop an overall plan to improve oral health of young children in Illinois; to increase literacy about oral health among providers and families; and to increase preventative efforts in diverse settings. Through development of a comprehensive advisory committee and stakeholders, ICAAP will hold statewide listening sessions to assess current strengths and identify gaps and opportunitie4s for improvement in public health service delivery, education of parents and providers about oral health messaging and behavior change, and establishment of prevention programs in primarily nontraditional settings. In addition, ICAAP will create a comprehensive directory of programs and work to identify and promote best practices related to oral health literacy within existing systems and integration of prevention messages in early childhood programs. Lastly, ICAAP will begin to lay ground work for the successful implementation of its plan by education stakeholders on methods for improving oral health literacy and behavior change, securing commitments for continued participation, and identifying public and private resources to support future efforts.