Community Integration

Community Integration

Engaging Community Social Service Providers

We facilitate training for community social service providers about the importance of children’s oral health so they can share that information with their clients and refer them to a dental home. This includes WIC clinics, school-based health centers, federally qualified health centers, and Early Head Start and Head Start programs.

For example, we coordinated and evaluated for WIC the McMillen Health BRUSH training to integrate oral health education and dental referrals into the nutrition education provided to mothers with young children. Through the McMillen Health BRUSH training, WIC staff learned about the importance of children’s oral health, how to discuss the topic using the client-centered services approach, and provide resources to share with clients.

Results in Michigan

Michigan WIC partnered with Altarum, McMillen Health, Delta Dental Foundation, and the Michigan Health Endowment Fund to implement a WIC-oral health program over 3 years in 50 Michigan WIC clinics in rural and urban settings, training 210 staff. This program has increased access to care in both urban and rural settings, established dental homes before the onset of disease, and helped minimize the potential occurrence of early childhood caries.

“The BRUSH pilot has been very well received by our clients. Parents told me at their next appointment that they are using their gum brushes twice a day!”

– WIC Clinic Staff