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DentaQuest Foundation Renews 18 Oral Health 2014 Initiative Grants

DentaQuest Foundation Renews 18 Oral Health 2014 Initiative Grants

December 2, 2013

The DentaQuest Foundation is reinforcing its national movement focused on improving the oral health of all by renewing all Oral Health 2014 Initiative (OH2014) grants. Since 2011, the Foundation has provided grant funding and technical support to these 18 state-based organizations. They have been working to make oral health a statewide health priority and improve access for those who currently do not receive such care.

“The national focus on health has created a window of opportunity for impact at the state level to improve the oral health of all,” said Ralph Fuccillo, president of the DentaQuest Foundation. “The Oral Health 2014 Initiative has developed a cadre of leaders across the U.S. who are addressing critical oral health needs in their communities and keeping oral health in statewide health conversations. They are the core of a network of oral health advocates and champions that is growing from coast to coast.”

The Oral Health 2014 Initiative has focused on eliminating systemic barriers that limit access to oral health care through strong community partnerships. Participating organizations are engaging partners across their states and regions to work together on tangible solutions to oral health issues.

Oral Health 2014 grantees have already had some remarkable results. This fall, West Virginia initiated school-based oral health screenings and an oral health curriculum in all schools, from K- 12. In South Carolina, programming is being put into place to bring oral health prevention and education to families in rural areas. An early childhood oral health literacy campaign in Rhode Island is encouraging early dental visits for children, educating parents, dentists, pediatricians and social service agencies across the state. In Virginia, there is curriculum change happening at every medical school across the state, focused on oral health across the health professions and lifespan. In the District of Columbia, fluoride varnish, a proven preventive treatment was approved for reimbursement under the Medicaid plan. In Colorado, a strong coalition of oral health supporters was prepared to support legislation for adult dental benefits under Medicaid when it was taken up by the legislature. In Arizona and North Dakota, Native American tribal leaders are talking about oral health as a serious health concern for their members. Pediatricians across Pennsylvania are being trained to provide oral health prevention guidance and make oral health a part of routine well child visits.

“Across all states, grantees are implementing plans and that will lead to a wealth of new projects that can be replicated and expanded across the U.S.,"said Fuccillo.

A complete list of Oral Health 2014 organizations can be found below:

Information about each Oral Health 2014 organization and its work can be found at: dentaquestfoundation.org/programs-partnerships/oral-health-2014.

About the DentaQuest Foundation

The DentaQuest Foundation invests in national and community-based efforts to improve oral health for all through its support of prevention and access to oral health care, and through its partnerships with funders, policy makers, and community leaders. For more information, please visit dentaquestfoundation.org. The DentaQuest Foundation is supported by DentaQuest, a leading oral health company, administering prevention-focused dental benefits to nearly 20 million individuals across the United States.