Primary Approaches

University of Alabama

About the Grant

Support to the University of Alabama (UAB) to implement a plan to establish the framework for interprofessional training that can be sustained over time and that will produce health care practitioners in Alabama with a basic understanding of oral health and its importance, and for Alabama health care practitioners to understand how to work together in health teams to provide optimal care to their patients and know when to refer a patient to their colleagues in a different health profession. The UAB Smiles for Alabama leadership team established a successful pilot program for interprofessional collaboration among three health professional schools in the planning phase – School of Dentistry (SOD), School of Medicine (SOM), School of Nursing (SON). In the implementation phase, UAB Smiles for Alabama will strengthen Alabama’s dental public health infrastructure at the state and local levels. The successful UAB Smiles for Alabama pilot program created for children in the planning phase, and expanding during the implementation phase, gives rise to the opportunity to provide interprofessional clinical training experiences in geriatrics to students and trainees from different disciplines. Additionally, UAB will invite the established geriatric Interprofessional Clinical Experience (ICE) to integrate the Smiles for Life curriculum training modules and deploy the oral health screening initiative. By expanding its scope, UAB Smiles for Alabama will strengthen the future of both programs and reduce barriers to oral health.