Rural Health Information Hub Latest News

Routine Dental Care May Reduce Stroke Risk

The importance of good oral health and its relationship to physical health has again been validated. According to a new study published in the American Heart Journal, periodontal disease appears to be associated with atrial fibrillation, and an irregular heart rate may be the mediator between the serious gum infection and stroke.

Community Water Fluoridation Equipment Grant Applications Being Accepted

PCOH is requesting proposals for community water fluoridation equipment grants. This grant seeks to issue funds to those public water systems wishing to initiate, update, or expand the practice of community water fluoridation. Priority will be given to initiation projects. A total of $20,000 will be awarded in the first half of 2021. Additional grants may be awarded in 2021 as funding becomes available. All grant applicants must complete the State Fluoridation Equipment Survey prior to submitting applications. Applications are due March 1, 2021.

Click here to take the survey.
Click here for the guidelines.

Pennsylvania Allows Dentists to Administer COVID-19 Vaccines

With many more pending, Pennsylvania joins more than a dozen other states in allowing dentists to administer the COVID-19 vaccine when delegated by a medical doctor or an osteopathic physician. As supplies of the vaccine are expected to increase considerably over the next few months, dental providers may play an important role in vaccine clinics.

Click here to view the authorizing document.

2021 Basic Screening Survey in Pennsylvania: PHDHPs Needed

Pennsylvania has few state-level data on dental caries rates in children. In response, the state is launching a program called the Basic Screening Survey (BSS). A list of 80 schools have been identified based on enrollment, demographics, geography, and other factors to serve as a representative sample of the state as a whole. Public Health Dental Hygiene Practitioners (PHDHPs) will serve as screeners during the 2021-2022 school year and will conduct a quick screening (less than 2 minutes) on all third grade students. Screeners will enter data for each school visited and attend a paid virtual training session this summer. Screeners will be paid a stipend for every school site they complete and all materials will be provided.

Applications are due April 8, 2021.

Click here for more information.
Click here for qualifications.
Click here for the application.

PHDHP Site Expansion Finalized in Pennsylvania

The Public Health Dental Hygiene Practitioner (PHDHP) site expansion to medical settings in Pennsylvania has been published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and is effective upon this final-form rulemaking publication January 16, 2021. Please access this link for further information.