Less than half of the children who are eligible for Medicaid in NJ have ever been to the dentist. The pain can lead to the Emergency Room for expensive treatment, and infection is a serious risk to babies – and it’s all preventable.
UWCJ started a program that sends Dental Hygienists, some volunteers, into the home or school to provide education on oral health and to help facilitate mothers getting dental care for themselves and their children. A local health clinic in New Brunswick has agreed to provide treatment at a reduced rate. The strategy is to get the people who otherwise would use the Emergency Room to adopt preventive care, including regular cleanings, to help avoid dental trauma.
Most recently the program has provided assessments, referrals and fluoride varnish treatments to children enrolled in a United Way supported summer program at an area school and at a pre-school.