Dental Hub and Spoke Project Links Kansans in Underserved Areas to Dental Care
Brenda R. Sharpe,
President and CEO,
REACH Healthcare Foundation
Kansas, like many states with a vast rural geography, has substantial areas with little or no access to oral health services. Studies of the Kansas dental workforce show 93 of 105 counties do not have enough dentists to serve their population.
Given the state’s rural composition and concentration of population in a few larger communities, no single solution can fully address Kansas’ oral health access barriers and workforce shortages. One innovative approach that began with a pilot project in 2007 not only significantly improved access to dental care in the state, but also exemplifies how oral health leaders can leverage the safety net health care infrastructure to provide dental services in deeply underserved areas.
Views from the Field: 6-18-12