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Dental hygienists working to expand their role in oral health

Millions of Americans are going without dental care. Some lack insurance or money to pay for services. Others are too young or old or disabled to get themselves to a dentist’s office. Still others live in poor or isolated places where providers are in short supply. Dental hygienists who gathered in Nashville June 17-23 for the 92nd annual session of the American Dental Hygienists Association (ADHA), stress they are ready and willing to help get care to people who now lack it.

Organization leaders are determined to further expand hygienists’ freedom to work in the field. And they say that efforts to enable hygienists to become mid-level dental providers trained to drill and extract teeth are gaining momentum nationwide.

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