Build a Public Health Infrastructure for Prevention of Oral Health Disease: School-Based Dental Programs
Paula Lee, MPH, RDHAP
Problem: Currently, more than half of California kindergartners have experienced tooth decay, and by third grade, this number rises to over 70 percent. If left untreated, tooth decay effects children's overall health, social-emotional development, and academic performance.
Current Status: In California, SB 1433, the kindergarten oral health assessment (KOHA) requirement was signed into law in 2006 and requires children enrolled in public school for the first time (at kindergarten or first grade) have an oral health assessment. AB 1433 was amended in 2017 per SB 379 states that each school or school districts are responsible for reporting KOHA data annually. However, the compliance rate is low for schools distributing, collecting. and uploading KOHA data. Once COVID-19 pandemic, the compliance rate plummeted.
Solution: This CHIP project was aimed to conduct an environmental scan of key issues and barriers, identify collaborative partners, and build public health infrastructure for school-based screening programs aimed to create access to oral health screening for families, link them to a dental home, and increase compliance rate of KOHA requirement.
October 18, 2022