DENTAL HEALTH: Grants Help Expand Care for Low-Income Families
The Sierra Health Foundation and the California Endowment have contributed $500,000 and $1 million, respectively, to the brightSMILES Partnership, an organization seeking to expand dental health programs for low-income families in Northern California. Nine counties, including Sacramento, Placer, Yuba and Yolo will benefit from the first phase of grants -- totalling $805,791 -- to cover dental screening and sealants, school-based dental education, dental equipment and renovation of dental clinics and mobile dental services. Len McCandliss, president of the Sierra Health Foundation in Sacramento, cited a report by the Dental Health Foundation that found 31% of preschool children will experience tooth decay, 80% of which will remain untreated. He said, "Statistics on the state of dental health throughout California are grim and startling. Think about what that means, as these kids enter school, adolescence -- the implications are significant" (Griffith, Sacramento Bee, 10/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.