It takes a village to raise a child. It takes a team to stop preventable dental disease.
In addition to our programs for dental professionals, we provide primary care professionals with education, tools and resources to incorporate oral health and referrals into their daily practice. We also advocate for policies that align payment with prevention, disease management and outcomes, and that support integration of oral health into all aspects of health care.
Our current education initiatives focus on:
- Oral Health and Pregnancy. We facilitate interprofessional oral health education for dental and prenatal providers and promote expert guidelines regarding oral health care during pregnancy.
- Curriculum Integration. Non-dental providers play a key role in assessing oral health. We connect schools of medicine, nursing, physician assistant training and pharmacy with the Smiles for Life oral health curriculum, and collect data from these programs, to enhance training opportunities for existing and future providers and integrate interprofessional learning opportunities into the classroom.
- Oral Health and Special Needs. Adults with developmental disabilities are at a greater risk of untreated dental disease. We're training dentists across Virginia to care for these vulnerable individuals.
- Early Dental Home. Dental care in early childhood can begin a lifetime of good oral health and reduced health care spending. We're training dental providers and early childhood educators to establish consistent, ongoing care for children from the moment the first tooth erupts.
- Oral Health Integration. Oral health is an important component of overall health and well-being. Check out our Integration Toolkit for tools and resources to integrate oral health and primary care services.
Other educational initiatives include:
- Patient-Centered Medical Home. Health care is trending toward collaborative, team-based care. We work to ensure oral health is considered a vital component of this burgeoning health care model.
- Oral Health and Chronic Disease. Oral health is fundamentally linked to bodily conditions. We're using the patient-centered care model to ensure patients with chronic disease receive health-saving oral exams as part of the disease management process.
Contact Sarah Bedard Holland for more information.