Primary Approaches

Oral Health Kansas

About the Grant

Support to Oral Health Kansas as part of the Oral Health 2014 Initiative. Over the past decade, Kansas has developed a deep oral health infrastructure, however poor and underserve Kansans continue to struggle to gain access to dental providers and a way to pay for dental services. Oral Health Kansas proposes to develop a stakeholder planning process to strengthen the state’s dental care delivery system and address financing models for dental care in Kansas. A diverse, state-level steering committee will select three communities in which to set up pilot projects to increase community-based dental care delivery. Rural/frontier communities will be selected, and the target communities will engage new and creative partners in facilitated community conversations to build on the existing hub and spoke Community Health Center model. Each community will set up and begin a pilot project to accomplish one or more of the following: 1) set up dental clinics in hospitals or nursing homes, 2) purchase portable equipment and develop a series of clinics in the hospital, nursing home, schools, etc., 3) recruit Extended Care Permit (ECP) dental hygienists. The project steering committee also will identify current barriers to full implementation of the current Kansas dental practice act and explore potential new models of reimbursement. Such models may include a residence-based dental insurance policy for adults, insurance policies, targeted at older adults who continue to live in the community, and allowing hospitals and nursing facilities to be able to bill Medicaid for dental services. The project steering committee also will explore ways to streamline the ECP system to make it less cumbersome for dental hygienists to want to provide ECP services.