November 1, 2021
Dental therapy is a proven community-based solution that ensures all children and families in America have access to oral health care, parents have access to professional wage jobs and communities improve population health. Since 2006, WKKF has supported Tribal and non-Native communities coming together to highlight the need for dental therapists.As a new type of mid-level dental provider, dental therapists are delivering care to communities where dental care was not accessible for everyone. Dental therapists increase access to oral health care, expand the dental team and promote economic development. Moving forward it will take coalitions of civic, nonprofit, philanthropic and public and private sector leaders to continue engaging with communities. For this vision to become real, communities must acknowledge oral health disparities and racial inequities, heal those wounds and move forward to implement strategies that can allow dental therapists to provide much-needed care to patients.