Harrisburg, PA – The Wolf Administration today announced that the state received two grants totaling $3.45 million to improve the oral health of Pennsylvanians and to help ensure that oral health is affordable and accessible.
“Working with a dental health professional regularly to prevent and treat oral health issues is an important step that each person can take to maintain good overall health,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “This funding helps us ensure that those living in underserved areas have access to oral health. It is essential that people realize that you cannot be truly healthy without good oral health.”
One of the grants comes from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration. The $1.6 million grant, which will be awarded over a four-year period, will support efforts to improve oral health in Pennsylvania. Funding will help to provide continuing education to oral health professionals, increase opportunities to serve vulnerable populations, provide tele-dentistry support, establish dental clinics in rural areas and support oral health integration into community-based agencies.
The second grant comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and is for $1.85 million. The grant will allow for the hiring of a public health dental director to integrate oral health into the public health system. Additionally, the grant will support efforts to increase school-based oral health programs, develop and maintain the state’s first oral health surveillance system, and increase the number of Pennsylvanians served by community water systems that offer fluorinated water.
The mission of the department’s Oral Health Program is to promote good oral health as part of the well-being of all Pennsylvanians.
For more information about oral health, visit the Department of Health website at www.health.pa.gov or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
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