Improving Access to Oral Health Care for Vulnerable and Underserved Populations
This report, from the Institute of Medicine's Committee on Oral Health Access to Services, examines the scope and consequences of inadequate access to oral health services in the United States and recommends ways to combat the economic, structural, geographic, and cultural factors that prevent access to regular, quality care.
The report suggests changing funding and reimbursement for dental care; expanding the oral health work force by training doctors, nurses, and other nondental professionals to recognize risk for oral diseases; and revamping regulatory, educational, and administrative practices. It also recommends changes to incorporate oral health care into overall health care.
The recommendations are expected to help direct the efforts of government agencies, policy makers, health professionals, private and public health organizations, licensing and accreditation bodies, educational institutions, health care researchers and philanthropic and advocacy organizations.