DHD#10 School and Community Oral Health Services Program receives grant from Delta Dental Foundation

The School and Community Oral Health Services Program, provided by District Health Department #10 (DHD#10), recently received grant funding from Delta Dental Foundation for the purchase of a dental outreach van.

Delta Dental Foundation awarded DHD#10 $31,999 to purchase a new 2020 Chrysler Pacifica van. The van will allow for expansion of the dental program across multiple rural DHD#10 counties as well as provide a means to transport totes, dental education materials and valuable equipment to oral health screenings and community events.

The DHD#10 School and Community Oral Health Services Program provides oral health screenings, education and outreach with the goal of every person having a local dental home to receive dental care on a regular basis. Unique to DHD#10’s program is the utilization of a Registered Dental Hygienist, as an oral health coordinator, to provide these services.

The oral health screenings are provided at no cost to families or schools and are not billed to dental insurance. These screenings have proven valuable in providing a snapshot of oral health needs in both schools and the community. Recently, DHD#10 also started a SEAL! Michigan-School Based Sealant Program. These programs will aid in alleviating some of the barriers to oral healthcare.

“The dental van will allow for the oral health program to cost effectively expand to other DHD#10 counties by reducing travel expenses and eliminating the need for multiple trips to deliver screenings supplies. The money saved will then be able to be better utilized in serving more students in the schools and communities,” said Elizabeth Johnson, Oral Health Coordinator for District Health Department #10. “I am so grateful for the support of the Delta Dental Foundation in helping me continue to work towards reducing dental care barriers in the community.”

Dental health programs have a long history of support within DHD#10 communities. DHD#10 frequently partners with community-based dental centers and advocates for expansion of clinics to meet the needs of the underserved populations in rural communities, link residents to dental homes, and educate communities on the importance of good oral health which is linked to overall health and well-being.

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