Learning and Leading
Learning and Leading:
Options and Opportunities to Address Unmet Oral Health Needs
Beau Rivage Resort & Casino
Last July, health care leaders from Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), in partnership with the Mississippi Public Health Institute, the University of Florida College of Dentistry and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, convened at the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino in Biloxi, Miss. for a summit titled “Learning and Leading: Options and Opportunities to Address Unmet Oral Health Needs.” The program was conducted by MSM’s Community Voices: Healthcare for the Underserved to raise awareness about the oral health crisis in the United States.
During the summit, Community Voices released the results of a three-state survey of over 2,000 participants. Results support that tooth decay is recognized as the most common childhood disease. The decline of uninsured children seeing a dentist from 31.5% to 25.2% in 2011, combined with the more than 16 million estimated low-income children on Medicaid not receiving routine medical care, shows there is a need to examine avenues to expand the dental workforce and provide oral care homes to underserved children.
Speakers at the event included Dr. Henrie M. Treadwell, founding director of Community Voices: Healthcare for the Underserved and MSM Department of Community Health and Preventive Medicine research professor, Frank A. Catalanotto, DMD, University of Florida College of Dentistry Department of Community Dentistry and Behavioral Science professor, Starla Hairston Blanks, director of Community Voices and Jeffery Parker, Sarrell Dental Center chairman of the board.