Policy Initiatives for Improving Access to Oral Health Care in Pennsylvania

Principal Investigator(s)

Robert J. Weyant, MS, DMD, DrPH


  • Joseph Ambrosino, MS, MPM, DMD, FAGD

The Surgeon General identified oral diseases as a 'silent epidemic' affecting the most vulnerable American citizens. Pennsylvania has 88 Dental Health Professional Shortage Areas, which would require an estimated 241 dentists to fill. Solutions to the workforce problem could include increasing the supply of dentists, improving the geographic distribution of dentists, expanding the scope of existing disciplines, or introducing new practice models. This study explored these options and developed a comprehensive policy recommendation to support a state-wide plan for increasing the supply of dental services available to those with low access to care.