Funder: DentaQuest Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Author: Stacey Chazin, Center for Health Care Strategies

October 2015 | Technical Assistance Brief


The consequences of poor oral health, such as elevated risk for chronic conditions, increased emergency department use, and decreased employability, are becoming increasingly recognized. However, because states are not required to provide dental benefits to adult Medicaid beneficiaries, only one-third of states provide comprehensive oral health care coverage. With up to 13 million adults expected to gain access to Medicaid by 2024, state Medicaid agencies and oral health organizations have a critical opportunity to engage oral health stakeholders to improve dental coverage and access.

This technical assistance brief draws on the experiences of six organizations that participated in the Engaging Stakeholders to Improve Dental Coverage and Access for Medicaid-Enrolled Adults learning collaborative, supported by the DentaQuest Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. It describes key activities that can be undertaken to engage oral health stakeholders in efforts to improve dental coverage and access for low-income adults.

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