June 2018 The Special Olympics Northern California and Nevada Healthy Athletes Special Smiles Program…
brought together several enthusiastic volunteers and organizations: UNLV School of Dental Medicine, Nevada State Oral Health Program, Oral Health Nevada, NV Dental Hygienists’ Association, TMCC, and the community to provide education on oral health, screening for dental disease, and application of fluoride varnish for many Special Olympians.
What a Wonderful and uplifting event!
Thank you all: Caitlin Sheets, Healthy Athletes Program Manager at Special Olympics Northern California & Nevada, Civon Gewelber, DDS, Richard Reich, DDS, Antonina Capurro, DMD, Syd McKenzie, RDH, Caryn Solie, RDH, Judy White, RDH and many other great facilitators and support team members.
Lancette VanGuilder, RDH, BS, grew up in small towns across the United States — many of them in very rural parts of Nevada. “Although there are wonderful things about living in remote areas of our beautiful country, access to health care is not one of them. It was always evident to me that there were significant barriers to getting adequate health care when you lived far away from communities with regional hospitals and specialists. Dentistry was no different, but that just made my pursuit of a career in dental hygiene more appealing. I always wanted to help people and thought that a healthy smile was the greatest gift you could give someone,” she said.
After working in private practice for 22 years, VanGuilder launched Future Smiles of Northern Nevada as a nonprofit school-based oral health program funded by grants and private donations to help increase access to oral health care for children in rural communities. “I knew there were very limited oral health resources for families in rural Nevada, and with my public health endorsement, I could bring critical preventive services to children who need it the most,” she said.
Tooth decay is a preventable condition that may affect the overall health and well-being of children. Future Smiles of Northern Nevada provides dental disease prevention services in two counties, including one rural county classified as a 100% dental health care professional shortage area. Nevada ranks among the last in the nation with respect to oral health. The schools identified in this project have 56-88 percent of students receiving free and reduced-cost lunch. In addition, dental hygienists in Nevada may practice independently in public health settings utilizing a Public Health Endorsement. VanGuilder developed many collaborative relationships in the community to ensure that the children she sees have every opportunity to have a dental home. In addition, she also drew support from various organizations, including county alliances, a community-based health and wellness hub, the dental hygiene program at the nearby college, local federally qualified health centers, and two county school districts.
VanGuilder and her Future Smiles team utilized mobile equipment to provide students with oral health education and supplies, fluoride varnish treatments and dental sealants. Students with unmet dental needs were referred to established dental partners in the communities. They also utilized Sealant Efficacy Assessment for Locals and States (SEALS) to provide a snapshot view of oral disease rates and program success, in addition to electronic health records and data collection software. Pre- and post-tests were given prior to oral health education presentations to measure teaching objectives, and surveys were provided to the schools and parents to track satisfaction.
Thanks to the 2017 American Dental Hygienists’ Association’s Institute for Oral Health Wrigley Foundation Community Service Grants, VanGuilder purchased mobile equipment and supplies and hired two part-time staff members to help. Today, Future Smiles of Northern Nevada serves all grade levels at 10 high-risk schools within an 85-mile radius, providing oral health education, disease prevention, preventive services and follow-up case management to families.
“In just our first year of operation, we provided oral health education and supplies to 4,106 students, ranging from ages 4 to 18. I placed 635 dental sealants and provided 249 fluoride varnish treatments – in fact, we provided $35,549.67 in services! In addition, a few local dentists in the community offered to see children referred from our program and donated $10,000 in follow-up restorative services. Community-based oral health programs like Future Smiles of Northern Nevada can provide high-quality and cost-effective care to underserved populations!” VanGuilder remains passionate about access to care issues across our nation, the power of prevention and utilization of the dental hygienists (2018)
Nevada Oral Health Legislative Day
March 23, 2017
A sincere thank you to my Oral Health Nevada Board members, who devoted their time and energy to making our legislative day a wonderful success. Many of these individuals wear multiple hats within the health care arena and their service to our state should not go unnoticed. I am so grateful to know and work with these amazing individuals: Syd McKenize, Cathy Davenport, Wendy Madison and Pam Straley.
Also, I would like to recognize and appreciate our Coalition partners, State Oral Health Program Staff and volunteers whose participation was vital to our success. Thank you to: Future Smiles’ Terri Chandler, Jan Taylor from S. NV and Annette Worley and Norma Espinoza, from Lyon County; Nevada Dental Hygienists’ Association and Nevada Dental Benefits; Dr. Capurro, State Dental officer and Judy White, State PHDH; numerous organizational partners; Volunteers – Christine Openshaw, Yvonne Flynn and Mary and John Liveratti. In addition, I am so thankful to all the individuals behind the scene whose wealth of knowledge and input were so freely contributed so that we could educate our law makers on the importance of Oral Health in our great State of Nevada.
Oral Health Nevada
The 2017 Oral Health Legislative day event was held Thursday, March 23rd, 2017 kicking off shortly after 8 am with a continental breakfast provided by the Nevada Dental Hygienists’ Association. Room 311 in the Legislative Building with its large glass wall looking out to the Sierras provided the perfect space for hosting a breakfast and luncheon as well as showcasing information and posters ranging from general oral health to oral cancer, the recent RAM events, water fluoridation, sealant programs and the Adopt-a-Vet program. Fresh tulips on each table added a warm and welcome atmosphere encouraging attendees to circulate and engage in conversations with coalition members.
Due to the nature of legislative sessions in Nevada, high flexibility is needed to accommodate the ever changing schedule of the legislators during the 120 days of the session. Pam Straley, of Oral Health Nevada, did a wonderful job scheduling and in many cases rescheduling one-on-one appointments between individual coalition and community members and their individual legislators. Through her efforts, we ensured stakeholders from the North, South and Rural parts of the state were able to connect with their representatives, letting them know why Nevada’s Oral Health Matters. The Coalitions’ presence at the legislature was enhanced with Syd McKenzie and Jan Taylor having the privilege of sitting on the floor with their representative and having our organization and event read into the record.
Branding our message has been highly effective in name recognition and relationship building among legislators and their staff. In January save the date emails were sent to all legislators. Then a month prior to the event, invitations were hand delivered to each legislative office. Often, we were only able to meet with the staff person assigned to the legislator, but this provided an opportunity to establish a relationship with the person that works closely with the legislator and has their ear on many subjects. The invitation to the luncheon was extended to staff, if the representative could not attend, providing another opportunity to strengthen relationships and provide visual experiences to take back to the legislator.
At lunch time the event kicked into high gear with over 60 individuals attending our event. Several Assembly and Senate members, legislator staff, lobbyists and friends to oral health were greeted by Coalition members to engage in conversations, answer questions and listen to concerns and input. Also in attendance was Dr. Antonia Capurro, State Dental Officer and Judy White, State Public Health Dental Hygienist which gave attendees the opportunity to meet with and ask questions about their duties and why their positions are important for the citizens of our State.
During the presentation portion of the event Dr. Capurro and Judy White gave a brief State of Oral Health in Nevada update and then went over the extensive and impressive list of activities they have been able to accomplish during the short period of time they have been in the Oral Health Program. Thank you again to these two dynamic women.
The remainder of our program was dedicated to recognizing Oral Health Nevada’s 2017 Oral Health Heroes, Assemblywoman Amber Joiner and Assemblywoman Maggie Carlton. Assemblywoman Joiner was recognized for her dedication to public health and for her proposed legislation, AB193 focused on bring community water fluoridation to Washoe County. Assemblywoman Maggie Carlton was recognized for her long time efforts to ensure access to dental care through her legislative work supporting Public Health Dental Hygienists and access to restorative care.
Following the presentation portion of the day, a group of Coalition members hand delivered educational packets to every legislator who was not able to attend the event or who had not met with individual constituents. General feedback from legislators and staff was centered on how much they appreciated our event and the information that we provided. The event focused on supporting the recommendations of the Advisory Committee for the state oral health program (AC4OH) – continue funding of the two dental positions within the oral health program and expand adult Medicaid dental benefits to include preventive services.
As of the time of this report, the budget still contained funding for the Dental Officer and the Public Health Dental Hygienists positions as well as some limited funding to support the oral health program duties. Per Administrator, Cody Phinney, information concerning the status of the Medicaid expansion is embargoed as it is considered to be connected to the Medicaid Dental RFP currently still in process.
The Nevada Dental Association efforts to lobby in favor of Assemblywoman Amber Joiner’s (co-sponsored by Assemblyman Michael Spinkle) community water fluoridation bill AB193 unfortunately were unsuccessful as AB193 died in committee April 14, 2017.
ADHA believes in helping dental hygienists achieve their full potential as they seek to improve the public’s oral health. We support your goals by helping to ensure access to quality oral health care; promoting dental hygiene education, licensure, practice and research; and representing your legislative interests at the local, state and federal levels.
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At the April 20, 2016 monthly dinner meeting, SNDHA members approved the proposed bylaws changes.
Click here to download the current bylaws.
Fall Newsletter – September 2015
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Spring Newsletter – April 2015
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SNDHA Bylaws – Drafted Revision June 2011
The SNDHA bylaws committee met in June 2011 and have submitted revisions for approval from the membership. During the business portion of the September monthly dinner meeting, the revisions will be voted upon for approval. Click here to download the revised draft of the bylaws.