Rural Health Information Hub Latest News

Report Finds Potential Medicare Dental Benefit Savings

The CareQuest Institute released a new report analyzing Medicare beneficiary data. Medicare does not include dental benefits, and dental coverage varies within Medicare Advantage plans. The report analysis concludes, adding dental coverage to Medicare has the potential to save the health care system billions of dollars per year in care for patients with diabetes and/or heart disease alone.

Click here to read the report.

Brief Explores Barriers to Oral Health Equity

The Center for Health Care Strategies, with support from the CareQuest Institute for Oral Health, published a brief, “Advancing Oral Health Equity for Medicaid Populations.” The brief describes common barriers for addressing oral health equity for Medicaid populations and outlines recommendations to improve oral health access and quality within four key areas: coverage and access, workforce capacity building, partnerships, and payment.

Click here to view the brief.

National Dental Group Works to Improve Access for Patients with Disabilities

The American Dental Association (ADA) shared several ideas about how Congress can ensure greater health outcomes for people with disabilities by providing accommodations in health care settings and further developing a health care workforce that understands the needs of people with disabilities. The ADA also urged Congress to provide grants for the training and continuing education of dentists on treating patients with disabilities to dental schools, dental residency and fellowship programs, and dental associations.

Click here for more information.

Mental Health in Dental Professionals: The Pandemic & Beyond

The American Dental Association (ADA) and the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) have been conducting ongoing research to examine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on dentists and dental hygienists. Join the presenters on September 29th at 7 pm ET to discuss the findings of their study and the mental health challenges facing the oral health professional community.

Click here for more information and to register.

Academy of Pediatric Dentistry Foundation Offers Access to Care Grants

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) Foundation is awarding Access to Care Grants of up to $20,000 to support community-based initiatives that provide dental care and ultimately serve as a dental home to underserved and limited access children up to age 18. Eligible applicants include, but are not limited to, nonprofit organizations, local health jurisdictions, county health departments, hospitals and clinics, state government agencies, colleges and schools of dentistry or medicine, and national, state, and local dental societies. The application deadline is October 3rd.

Click here for more information and instructions to apply.

New Report: Higher Oral Cancer Prevalence Among Medicaid Enrollees

A new journal article, co-authored by the CareQuest Institute for Oral Health, concludes that Medicaid enrollees experience higher oral cancer and throat cancer incidence, prevalence, and mortality compared with commercially insured adults. The article is based on a study that compared all cases and new cases of oral and throat cancers among approximately 38,000 Medicaid enrollees and approximately 27,000 individuals with commercial medical insurance. Researchers found that total cancer treatment costs were higher for those with commercial insurance and that cases of oral and throat cancers were lower among adults who had seen a dentist within the prior year.

Click here to read more.

Promoting Dental Infection Control Awareness Month

September is Dental Infection Control Awareness Month and the theme for 2022 is “Staying in the Know Together.” This annual observance is celebrated by the Organization for Safety, Asepsis, and Prevention (OSAP) to help clinicians and infection control coordinators promote a safe, professional environment and encourage patient dialogue. Providers have the opportunity to demonstrate commitment to infection prevention and patient safety.  A social media toolkit is available on the OSAP website.

Click here to learn more.
Click here to download the toolkit.