Excellent Oral Health for ALL Virginians

In This Issue
CE Opportunities
Medical Dental Collaboration Initiative Summary
Welcome, Carrie!
Enhanced Dental Benefits for Pregnant Women
Pediatric Oral Health Advocate Program
Of Interest
CE Opportunities
Dental Care Approaches for Adults with Disabilities
Oct. 17-18
Chesapeake, VA
Free, two-day training for dental providers wishing to improve their skills in caring for patients with special health care needs. 10.5 CERP credits. Registration deadline is Friday, Oct. 3.

2014 Virginia Oral Health Summit
Friday, Nov. 14
Richmond, VA
Register today!
The 2014 Summit will focus on how all providers can work together to provide comprehensive health care for their patients. Discounted early registration available through October 15.
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Medical and Dental Collaboration Initiative  
VaOHC's Medical and Dental Collaboration Initiative partners have achieved significant process over the past two years.  Of note, our partners have:


- Educated over 700 existing health care professionals about oral health integration and collaborative practice;

- Educated over 800 future health care professionals about the important role of oral health in comprehensive care; and,

- Trained over 150 pediatricians, family physicians and their teams about the oral health needs of children and the importance of a dental home.


Read our complete Initiative Summary

Thanks to Initiative partners for their continued hard work!
Carrie Wampler!
The VaOHC team has a new staff member! Carrie Wampler has joined the staff as our new Office and Program Assistant. Carrie comes to VaOHC with extensive administrative and social work experience. Please join us in welcoming Carrie!
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Read about the Coalition's accomplishments


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September 2014 Newsletter

VaOHC Legislative Committee Committed to Dental Coverage for Pregnant Women


Members of the Virginia Oral Health Coalition's (VaOHC) Legislative

Photo by Bob Brown, Richmond Times Dispatch

Committee met in September to discuss oral health policies and legislation relevant to oral health access, and the current budget landscape. Members reaffirmed their belief that all individuals enrolled in Medicaid should have access to a comprehensive dental benefit (one of the VaOHC's five guiding principles).


Specifically, the Committee praised the recent announcement from Governor McAuliffe to provide enhanced dental care to pregnant women enrolled in Medicaid and FAMIS. The group also discussed the potential loss of funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) that could affect children, caregivers and pregnant women in Virginia.


Medicaid Dental Coverage for Pregnant Women

On September 8, Governor McAuliffe directed the Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS) to issue an emergency regulation to provide enhanced dental care to the 45,000 pregnant women in Virginia who are eligible for Medicaid and FAMIS. Of note about the enhanced benefit:

  • The benefit will be paid for with funding from the Virginia Health Care Fund.
  • DMAS is currently working to outline the specific services that will be covered under the enhanced benefit.
  • The benefit is set to take effect on March 1, 2015.

[Read more]


CHIP Funding Expiration

CHIP (known as "FAMIS" in Virginia) provides medical and dental coverage to more than 113,000 children and 1,300 pregnant women in Virginia whose families earn up to 200% FPL (or $47,700 for a family of four) -- just over the Medicaid income limit of 143% FPL.  Under the Governor's directive, pregnant women enrolled in FAMIS will receive enhanced dental benefits beginning March 1, 2015.  Unfortunately, CHIP's federal funding is set to expire on September 30, 2015. 


With grant funding from the Consumer Health Foundation, VaOHC has partnered with Voices for Virginia's Children (Voices) to organize a federal and state advocacy effort to ensure no Virginians lose this affordable coverage.  VaOHC and Voices are convening a group of stakeholders on Monday, October 27 from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. in Richmond to create a statewide strategy to advocate for funding extension.  If you're interested in participating, please RSVP to Carrie Wampler.  


Pediatric Oral Health Advocate Program

Partners discuss the program at a kickoff meeting
VaOHC is implementing a pediatric oral health advocate program, with funding from the Dental Trade Alliance Foundation and in partnership with the American Academy of Pediatrics - Virginia Chapter and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. The program will further engage pediatric practices in the oral health care of their patients and reinforce the importance of preventive oral health services and a dental home by age one.  The program will identify, train and support pediatricians to serve as oral health advocates among their peers, which includes providing technical assistance and guidance to other pediatric providers on clinical and office issues, such as referrals to a dental home, billing, coding and effective use of extenders.  Pediatricians who work in safety net settings or private practice are eligible to participate.

If you're interested in becoming a pediatric oral health advocate, please contact Katherine Libby.


Of Interest


Oral Health and Overall Health

Smile Circle 

Oral health and overall health are fundamentally intertwined. The following links present current information on how oral health is connected to overall health and well-being.  



CE Opportunity: Oral Health Considerations for People with Special Needs

Adult w Down's Syndrome The Special Care Dentistry Association is now offering an online CE course entitled "Oral Health Considerations for People with Special Needs." This 16-CE credit course is self-paced. 


Online Course on Interprofessional Collaborative Practice

Hand shake The University of California is hosting a five-week online course regarding "Collaboration and Communication in Healthcare: Interprofessional Practice" to introduce health professionals to the fundamental principles and skills for effective interprofessional collaborative practice.


Improving Access to Care for Vulnerable People Living in Canada


The Canadian Academy of Health Sciences recently released a report that assessed access to oral health care for Canadians.  The findings showed that vulnerable populations had both the highest level of oral health problems and highest difficulty accessing care, and that current health care delivery infrastructures are insufficient in providing oral health care to this population.


Read a summary of the report's findings

Please visit our website for more oral health information