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Oral Health

Oral health is essential to overall health, but access to such services is limited. In response, many foundations and corporate giving programs are working to improve oral health care through policy and advocacy, workforce development, and delivery system support. GIH strives to increase funder awareness of this important need, particularly for vulnerable populations.

Contact Rana Suliman for more information about our programming in this area.

Issue Spotlight

February 2018

Henry Schein, Inc. has committed $250,000 in dental care product kits to the America’s Dentists Care Foundation (ADCF) as part of a two-year partnership. The kits are valued at $5,000 each and will support ADCF’s Mission of Mercy (MOM) dental clinics initiative, which provides free oral health care to people living in underserved communities across the United States. The donation is an initiative of Henry Schein Cares, the company’s global corporate social responsibility program.

January 2018

The Medicare program specifically excludes coverage of dental, vision, and hearing services. As a result, many beneficiaries do not receive necessary care, and those that do are subject to high out-of-pocket costs. A new study from The Commonwealth Fund finds that among Medicare beneficiaries, 70 percent of people who had trouble eating because of their teeth did not go to the dentist in the past year. Lack of access was particularly acute for poor beneficiaries. Because few people have supplemental insurance covering these additional services, among people who received care, three-fourths of their costs of dental and hearing services were paid out of pocket. The study’s authors propose a basic benefit package for dental, vision, and hearing services offered as a premium-financed voluntary insurance option under Medicare. Assuming the benefit package could be offered for $25 per month, they estimate the total coverage costs would be $1.924 billion per year, paid for by premiums.

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