Tuesday, July 28, 2015

New Program Helps Dental Pros Improve Access

Rio Salado Dental Clinic staff, volunteers and students at July 8 Community clinic
Rio Salado Dental Clinic staff, students and volunteers at July 8 Community Clinic for Kids

Rio Salado College is offering an online certificate program that trains community health workers to help bring better dental health to people in underserved communities.

Classes for Rio Salado's Community Dental Health Coordinator (CDHC) program, created by the American Dental Association (ADA), begin on Aug. 25. The class is limited to certified dental assistants and registered dental hygienists.

The registration deadline is Aug. 1, 2015, however, this deadline may be extended provided students have most requirements fulfilled by Aug. 1.  Please call for approval.
image of rio dental clinic staff with patients

“CDHCs truly are making headway in improving access to care for people living in communities suffering disproportionately from dental disease,” said ADA President Dr. Maxine Feinberg. “We are excited about the extent to which these future CDHCs can help break down the barriers impeding people from attaining good oral health.”

Rio Salado’s classes will take place during three 16-week trimesters, followed by internships. Approximately 10 students will be accepted.

The college is offering the program to prospective CDHC students in Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington State, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming and the District of Columbia.

“This program will not only be an asset to dentists in Arizona, but to dentists throughout the country,” said Arizona Dental Association Executive Director Kevin Earle.

CDHCs are trained to provide oral health education and disease prevention, and to help people navigate the public health system to receive care from dentists. Rio Salado College hosted the initial ADA CDHC pilot program, from which 34 people graduated.

“We are thrilled that Rio Salado is again hosting this wonderful program, which will ensure that more Arizona residents, as well as others throughout the country, will be able to enjoy good oral health.”

For more information about Rio Salado's CDHC program, visit this web page.