Community College Daily: A Plan to Provide Affordable Dental Care
Community colleges and workforce investment boards (WIBs) are ideal institutions to advocate for affordable dental care and to train the workforce to offer it, according to a new report.
Several states are considering the scope of practice for midlevel dental health professionals—such as dental hygienists—to meet the growing need, especially in rural and inner-city areas, said the report from The Pew Charitable Trusts. About one in four children—or 19 million—lack dental coverage, according to data from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Alaska and Minnesota already use dental therapists. But developing those professionals will require new training programs and recruitment efforts, according to the Pew report. Community colleges and WIBs can help lead the effort based on their ability to bring together partners, analyze local needs and develop quality programs quickly, it said. Many two-year colleges are also located in or near areas that need such services the most.
“Community colleges are uniquely positioned to develop midlevel providers as career option to effectively train a geographically and culturally diverse workforce, representative of the communities most in need of greater access to dental care,” the report said.
Read the full article at ccdaily.com.
- Children's Dental Policy