Virginia Oral Health Coalition Update

February 2016

In This Issue
Save the Date

2016 Virginia Oral
Health Summit
Thursday, November 1

Sponsorship and exhibit opportunities are available. Contact Samantha Dorr for details. 

CME Webinar: 

Pediatric Oral Health


Register for the free webinar Meeting MOC Part IV Requirements using Pediatric Oral Health on Wednesday, March 16 from 12:00 - 1:30 p.m. ET to learn how to integrate oral health services into a busy practice and earn MOC part IV credit for your efforts. This webinar is hosted by the Connecticut Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and From the First Tooth. 1 CME credit available.


VDHA Spring Scientific Session


The 63rd Scientific Session of the Virginia Dental Hygienists' Association will be held March 18-20, 2016, at the Hilton Richmond Hotel. 17 hours of continuing education will be available. 


Please take a moment and support the Coalition's work.



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Virginia Oral Health Coalition

4200 Innslake Drive

Glen Allen, Virginia 23060


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Legislature on Track to Support Oral Health Access

Of note, bills that support access to oral health care are showing bipartisan support this session. One piece of legislation will enable dental hygienists to work under remote supervision in safety net sites and another will allow dental safety net providers to more easily deliver care through mobile clinics. For more information, view our website.

Virginia Medicaid Agency Applies for DSRIP Waiver

Virginia's Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS) - the state agency that administers the Medicaid and FAMIS programs - recently submitted an application for a Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) waiver to coordinate care and transition to new payment models for high-cost Medicaid enrollees. Despite significant public comment recommending that the DSRIP waiver reflect the entire array of services available to Medicaid beneficiaries (including the limited dental benefit for adults), the DSRIP application does not include oral health. As the application process progresses, VaOHC will continue to follow its implementation and encourage oral health inclusion where applicable. 

Children's Dental Health Project Launches "End Cavities" Website 
As you know, tooth decay affects more children than than asthma or obesity and, though preventable, can significantly impair development. The Children's Dental Health Project (CDHP) has launched a new website "End Cavities" ( with financial support from the Colgate-Palmolive Company. The site aims to address early childhood caries with education, resources and strategies for providers, advocates and caregivers. Of note, the website hosts a recent survey of that reveals significant gaps in public knowledge about oral health. 


Flint Water Crisis and Oral Health 
The water crisis in Flint, Michigan is raising questions regarding public water supplies, in addition health concerns about lead consumption. Unfortunately, elevated lead levels have negative consequences on oral health. A recent study found a strong association between blood lead levels and cavities in children ages two to six. Furthermore, individuals who primarily drink bottled drinking water may not receive optimal levels of fluoride. 

The CDC website offers tips on how to have your public water supply tested and ways to minimize or avoid lead exposure. Additionally, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials has put together a list of resources for state health leadership to monitor the lead crisis. 
Of Interest
Oral Health and Overall Health

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. 
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President Obama Extends CHIP Funding, Encourages Medicaid Expansion

President Obama has extended federal Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) funding through fiscal year 2019; CHIP funding supports Virginia's FAMIS program that provides affordable medical, dental and behavioral health coverage to children and pregnant women. President Obama also encouraged Medicaid expansion in states like Virginia that have not yet expanded by proposing to reimburse the full cost of newly eligible adults for the first three years after expansion, effectively extending the 100 percent funding period. 

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New Website: VDH LiveWell

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) recently launched its newly-designed website VDH LiveWell ( The website redesign is more user-friendly to the public. To access the Dental Health Program webpage, click here.

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Utah Considers Medicaid Dental Benefits for Disabled Adults

Utah is considering a bill that would restore Medicaid dental benefits to more than 34,000 blind and disabled adults; dental benefits have been discontinued since 2009. The bill calls for the University of Utah School of Dentistry to pay the non federal cost of the program and allow university students treat the patient population. 

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Oral Health and Pregnancy: Multilingual Resources for Patients and Providers

The Oral Health Resource Center (OHRC) has released its popular handout Tips for Good Oral Health During Pregnancy in three more languages: Arabic, Korean and Portuguese. OHRC resources are freely available online to download, print and distribute. 

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