Department of Health and Partners Release 10-Year Oral Health Plan for State | New


Over 200 community stakeholders and dental providers have come together to create the State Oral Health Plan 2020-2030 which outlines a roadmap for preventing dental disease, facilitating access to oral health care -dental in Minnesota, improve data infrastructure and integrate dental care with medical care. care.

The plan is the result of an extensive community engagement process involving the Minnesota Department of Health, the Minnesota Dental Services Advisory Committee, and the Minnesota Oral Health Coalition. Community members and partners stressed that oral health care in Minnesota needs to shift to a more upstream approach of not only treating dental disease, but preventing it.

The plan calls on the state to focus on oral disease and oral health needs at different stages of life. This includes the role played by social and community factors in dental health, including health literacy, health equity, cultural practices and behaviors related to oral disease and its progression.

“We have a strong system of dedicated dental public health partners who provide oral health care to Minnesota residents of all walks of life,” said Mary Manning, deputy commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Health. “Yet many health disparities exist, and the subsequent hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic have only amplified the needs. This plan is a clear roadmap for improving oral health in Minnesota. “

Nationally, marginalized communities, such as low-income children and adults, people of color and Native Americans, and people with disabilities are more likely to suffer from dental disease. In Minnesota, it’s the same. Some facts reported by the Minnesota Oral Health Program Data Portal are as follows:

  • More than half of counties in Minnesota do not have adequate dental care providers.
  • Students living in rural communities have more tooth decay than students in urban areas.
  • Adults from low-income households are less likely to report having seen a dentist.
  • About 40% of adults aged 65 and over living in long-term care facilities had untreated tooth decay, according to 2016 data.
  • Latinx adults were 1.4 times less likely to have visited a dentist or dental clinic in the past year compared to non-Hispanic white adults, according to 2016 data.

“We look forward to the plan serving as a tool for better access and healthier mouths for all Minnesotans,” said Nancy Franke Wilson, executive director of the Minnesota Oral Health Coalition.

The MDH Oral Health Program will act as the backbone organization responsible for coordinating the implementation, continuous improvement and evaluation of the plan. MDH’s next action steps will focus on working with partners and experts to publicize the plan, develop focused work plans, and create a shared dental health measurement system to track success. MDH will also focus on building a group of professionals dedicated to rural oral health, while also reaching out to rural health advocates.

For more information about the MDH Oral Health Program or the State of Minnesota Oral Health Plan, visit About the State of Minnesota Oral Health Program.

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