An outgrowth of the Coalition’s Friendly Access Project, the Children’s Oral Health Task Force implements interventions to eliminate the access barriers to dental services for children ages zero through five years.
After assessment of the current system of children’s dental care and existing barriers to dental services, the Children’s Oral Health Task Force focused on oral health education as its central activity. The Children’s Oral Health Education Campaign seeks to increase parents’ and caregivers’ recognition of the importance of oral health, educate them on good oral health behaviors to practice with their children, and raise providers’ awareness of children’s oral health issues while promoting best-practice related prevention.
The Task Force places a special emphasis on strategies for the population most at risk for developing tooth decay – low income children covered by Medicaid insurance. Successful strategies that have been adopted by other communities include the Children’s Oral Health Education Wheel (of which over 100,000 have been distributed) and Dentist Referral Guide for Infants & Toddlers.