mdac hdr 2

March 2011
In This Issue: Legislation, Conference, more
The Fund for a Healthy Maine Alert
Other Oral Health Legislation
Oral Health Conference
Eating Disorders and the Dental Practice
MDAC Quarterly Meeting
Kids Oral Health Partnership
Quick Links
Word of Mouth
Dear Sarah,

Word of Mouth is the newsletter of the Maine Dental Access Coalition. We welcome your comments and invite your ideas for content.
The Fund for a Healthy Maine Alert 
legislation Proposed cuts to the Fund for a Healthy Maine will have a big impact on oral health, specifically school based oral health and sealant programs, subsidies to safety net clinics that allow them to provide sliding fee scale services, and loan repayment and dental school loans. The details on oral health are here. To understand the importance of the Fund, which is supported by the tobacco settlement, not tax dollars, and supports many public health efforts, go here. 


Its important that members of the Appropriation and Financial Affairs Committee get phone calls from constituents about the importance of the Fund. A list of these members and their contact information is here.  You can also leave messages for Senators and Representatives at 1-800-423-6900.

Other Oral Health Legislation Its been a tough session, and its not over yet. Here are some of the bills on which the coalition has taken a position. The Coalition's bill, LD 1114 ";An Act To Improve Preventive Dental Health Care and Reduce Future Avoidable Costs"; , is still in the HHS Committee where there is agreement on passage, as long as it can be worded in a way that doesn't trigger a fiscal note. HHS is working on a way to do this and we are hopeful this will be worked out. If we are successful it will mean that DHHS, with help from the MaineCare Dental Advisory Committee, will be able to provide services to some MaineCare eligible adults when costs will be lower and quality better if MaineCare provides restorative or preventative services. 


LD 390 Resolve, ";To Implement Certain Recommendations of the Governor's Task Force on Expanding Access to Oral Health Care for Maine People"; originally proposed to raise dental  reimbursement rate to the 75th percentile of other New England States. It came out of the HHS committee with a unanimous ought to pass... at the 10th percentile.


LD 1105 Resolve, ";To Study Oral Health Care in Maine and Make Recommendations Regarding How To Address Maine's Oral Health Care Needs";  has committee support, but the final wording is still in play.


LD 1290 Resolve, To Promote Prevention Practices in Oral Health Care This resolve requires the Department of Health and Human Services to develop and maintain a program to promote oral health and dental disease prevention activities and to gather and aggregate data regarding oral health programs in this State, it came out of committee Ought to Pass.


LD 70, An Act To Include Independent Practice Dental Hygienists in MaineCare 

This has come out of committee ought to pass, with a fiscal note. 
Successful Early Childhood Oral Health Conference 

Oral Health for Young Children: Everybody's Business, was attended by over 120 dental, medcial and childcare proessionals as well as funders and advocates for early childhood oral health. Conference evaluations show that the the speakers and content were well received and particpants are energized to continue working across professions to provide better oral health within their communities.  The conference proceedings, including all the speaker slides, and a participant list, are now on the MDAC web site.

Eating Disorders and the Dental Practice 
The March MDAC Quarterly meeting featured guest speaker 

Mary Orear, Executive Director of  Mainely Girls  and the Maine Eating Disorders Network Project Director, who gave a presentation on eating disorders and oral health. Dental providers are key to recognizing eating disorders especially  in adolescents. 80% of eating disorders start before the age of 18. There are 27 teams around the state who have been trained in diagnosing eating disorders, and they are looking for a dental professional to join each of the teams. A copy of the presentation and a list of teams in the state can be found on the Resources page of the MDAC web site.



MDAC Quarterly Meeting: June 10

The next quarterly meeting will be held at MCD 11 Parkwood Drive in Augusta at 9:45 -2:30 PM. Lunch is included and committees, which are open to everyone, meet after lunch. Agenda~ Updates on oral health legislation, follow up from the conference on finding dental homes for children, networking and more


Please let us know if you are coming, contact Dot Seigars at or 622-7566 x 232 


Kids Oral Health Partnership 
kohp logo plain If you are a medical provider, or a childcare/family services provider, and would like free training on oral health assessment, parental guidance and disease prevention, contact Bonnie Vaughan RDH at 622-7566 x 216 or
The Maine Dental Access Coalition (MDAC) is a public-private partnership focused on improving access to oral care. The Coalition's mission is ";To advocate for and improve access to quality preventive and comprehensive oral health care for all Maine residents.";
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