Envisioning Success: The Future of the Oral Health Care Delivery System in the United States

To enhance access to oral health care services and eliminate oral health disparities in America, The Institute of Medicine convened a workshop February 9–11, 2009 on the US Oral Health Workforce in the Coming Decade which highlighted both the current workforce’s failure to meet the nation’s needs as well as the promising opportunities presented by various workforce strategies to significantly enhance access and improve oral health outcomes.

The Santa Fe Group participated in the workshop with the goal of identifying common themes and providing a framework for evaluation. The contribution of its’  members focused on several key areas where change is critically needed in order to ensure successful implementation of any new workforce models. These areas include: a) the public and private financing of dental care, b) the dental educational system, and c) state and federal policies.