As part of its Oral Health Initiative, the North Carolina Health and Wellness Trust Fund has granted $1.93million to seven organizations, with the goal of improving dental care and dental health throughout the state.
"It is unfortunate that many North Carolina citizens do not receive basic dental care, which is so critical for overall good health," said Vandana Shah, executive director of the Health and Wellness Trust Fund. "We hope that these grant funds will provide more North Carolina citizens with access to high quality, accessible oral health care."
The Oral Health Initiative's goal is to increase access to treatment and preventative services for low-income, high-need individuals, as well as to train dentists and other dental health professionals to serve those people.
The fund points out that in 2006, about 32 percent of North Carolinians reported that they did not see a dentist that year. The percentages were higher among Native Americans (39 percent) African-Americans (42 percent) and Hispanics (56 percent).
One of the most important factors in children not getting proper dental care is the lack of dental insurance, according to the recent C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's health.
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