Rural Health Information Hub Latest News

September is Dental Infection Control Month

September is “Dental Infection Control Month” as recognized by the Organization for Safety, Asepsis, and Prevention. This celebration brings awareness to infection prevention and control in dental settings. This year’s theme is “Staying in the Know Together.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides training materials and other resources to increase the knowledge, skills, and ability of dental health care personnel to adhere to CDC guidelines and recommendations.

Click here to learn more.

New ADA Guidelines Released for Treating Dental Pain in Kids

New guidelines concerning treating short-team dental pain in children were released by the American Dental Association (ADA) after being developed by the ADA Science & Research Institute in Chicago, the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine, and the Center for Integrative Global Oral Health at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine. Children having short-term dental pain from extractions or toothache should not be prescribed opioids but rather manage those aches with over-the-counter ibuprofen and/or acetaminophen.

The guidelines align with U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommendations from 2017, which advised against the use of codeine and tramadol in children under age 12.

Click here for more information.

Crest and Oral-B Launch Communications Campaign

Crest and Oral-B have launched their latest #ClosingAmericasSmileGap campaign focusing on oral care supplies for back-to-school for students. For every Crest or Oral-B product purchased from August 1st to September 30th, Crest and Oral-B will donate oral care supplies to a child in need.

To underscore the critical need for oral healthcare among these communities, Crest and Oral-B have released a “U.S. Kids’ Oral Health Report Card” that sheds light on the shocking discrepancies in access, affordability, and education between low and high-income families in the U.S.

Click here for more information.
Click here to view the report card.

Funding Opportunity! Pennsylvania Oral Health Plan Mini-Grants

PCOH is requesting proposals for the 2023-2024 Oral Health Plan Mini-Grant Program. The purpose of this program is to facilitate the implementation of the goals and recommendations of the 2020-2030 PA Oral Health Plan, as well as to advance the oral health of all Pennsylvanians. Requests may not exceed $4,000.

Applications are due by September 29th at 5 pm.

Click here to view the guidelines.
Click here to apply.

Funding for this project is through the Pennsylvania Department of Health through Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under the Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by CDC, HHS or the U.S. Government.

Oral Health Equity Research Award Funding Opportunity Announced

The American Association for Dental, Oral, and Craniofacial Research and the Delta Dental Institute are now accepting applications for the second annual Oral Health Equity Research Award. This award supports research that advances recommendations for greater oral health equity in populations that lack access to dental care or improves oral health literacy for underserved populations. Submissions must represent original research that addresses social determinants of health and oral health disparities, and promotes oral health equity in the areas of access to care or oral health literacy. Two grants will be awarded at $25,000 each. Applications are due before October 17.

Click here for more information.

New Report: Addressing the Oral Health Needs of Hispanics in the U.S.

The Hispanic Dental Association and CareQuest Institute for Oral Health released a new report, “Addressing the Oral Health Needs of Hispanics in the U.S.,” which explores the oral health status, dental needs, utilization of dental services, and workforce. The report found that higher percentages of gum disease and tooth loss were reported among Hispanic people compared with other racial groups, and Hispanic children ages 6 to 11 had more decayed and filled teeth than others in that age group. The report also found that Hispanic dentists only represent 6% of the U.S. dentist workforce.

Click here to read the full report.

Just Released! Results from 2022 Pennsylvania Dental Assistant Survey

PCOH recently completed the “2022 PA Dental Assistant Survey” and created a resource to share the results. Dental assistants provide a key role in dental offices and health care settings. Like other health care and dental professionals, dental assistants have been affected by the rise in workforce challenges in recent years.

In 2022, PCOH sought to understand the state of dental assistants in Pennsylvania through disseminating a survey to dental assistants across the commonwealth. The survey was shared with dental assistants who had passed the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) between 1982-2021.

The findings of this survey outline next steps for recruitment and retention of Pennsylvania dental assistants.

Click here to download the resource.

Calling All Western Pennsylvania Providers: Your Help is Needed!

Are you a provider in Western Pennsylvania? Remote Area Medical® (RAM) needs your help at the upcoming clinic in Butler on November 11 and 12. The clinic will offer free dental care to underserved and uninsured individuals in the area. Volunteers are still needed to join in providing much-needed dental care to the community. Signing up to volunteer is simple – visit this link, select “Volunteer” at the top right of the page, and select “USA: Pennsylvania” and “Butler” when registering. You can also check out a video about volunteering for the upcoming Butler clinic.

Click here to watch the video.
Click here to view the volunteer flyer.
Click here for more information.

Oral Health Kids Resource Now Available in Swahili

Good news! The popular resource, “What Should Kids Drink” is now available in Swahili on the PCOH Request Materials Page!

This resource, created with the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, is intended to help parents and guardians understand the amount of water, milk, and juice that is appropriate for young children from birth to age 5. Please note this resource has previously been translated to Spanish as well. You can order this resource and more on the PCOH Request Materials Page.

Click here to view the resource.
Click here to visit the Request Materials Page.