Maryland General Assembly Tasks Maryland Dental Action Coalition for Study

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Study looks to identify options for expanding oral health care for adults

The Maryland General Assembly commissioned the Maryland Dental Action Coalition (MDAC) to conduct a study outlining options to expand oral health care and dental coverage for adults throughout the state. MDAC is an independent, nonprofit organization that aims to improve oral health in Maryland.

The study, due in December, will provide options to expand services to adults, including older adults in residential and community-based long-term care programs; extend Medicaid coverage to adult enrolees; increase the number of adults with oral health coverage under a qualified health plan; and establish or expand public health initiatives for adults without dental coverage. MDAC will develop policy options through an inclusive process with broad stakeholder input.

“Over the past few years, Maryland has made great strides in improving access to oral health care for all children,” said Margie Donohue, executive director of MDAC. “As we maintain our progress for children, we are extremely appreciative of the proactive stance taken by House Government and Operations Committee Chairman, Delegate Peter Hammen, and Senate Finance Chairman, Sen. Thomas Middleton, in exploring better access for Maryland’s adults. By also focusing on adult oral health, Maryland could achieve significant improvement in a public health issue which has major health, economic and employment consequences.”

The Maryland Dental Action Coalition (MDAC) is a nonprofit organization committed to improved health among all Marylanders through increased oral health prevention, education, advocacy and access to dental care. MDAC was established in 2007 as the Dental Action Committee. The coalition was convened by Maryland Secretary of Health and Mental Hygiene John M. Colmers in the wake of the death of 12-year-old Deamonte Driver who died from an untreated tooth infection that spread to his brain. The coalition was charged with providing recommendations to increase access to oral health care for all Maryland children. Today, MDAC aims to increase access to oral health care and prevent oral disease through health education and literacy for all Marylanders.

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