Leaders unite for children’s oral health
CHARLOTTE, N.C., USA: Leaders concerned with children’s health and welfare met here recently for the North American NCOHF Oral Health Zone Program Summit, to address the growing need for children’s oral health education and services. The summit focused on new technologies, educational resources and strategies for breaking the cycle of pediatric dental disease in communities throughout North America.
The event was hosted by Pelton & Crane/KaVo Americas, and travel accommodations for members of the NCOHF Affiliate network of nonprofit children’s community programs were provided by 3M ESPE.
Clinicians, educators, corporate leaders and representatives from nonprofit community programs worked together to explore aggressive solutions to the No. 1 chronic childhood disease. Preventive strategies and methods of engaging community stakeholders in efforts to promote children’s oral health and channels for raising awareness of this epidemic affecting millions of children were addressed during the conference. The event was held June 20-22.
“Pelton & Crane/KaVo were honored to partner with NCOHF: America’s ToothFairy to host this inaugural Oral Health Zone Summit. As a company, we recognize the critical importance of breaking the cycle of severe tooth decay and the devastating effects it has on children and their communities,” said Matthew J. Reintjes, president, North American dental equipment, KaVo Group. “We applaud the leaders who were active participants in the summit as we all work together in support of the worthwhile mission of NCOHF: America’s ToothFairy.”
“3M ESPE was proud to support this summit that brought together champions for children’s health throughout North America,” said John Stefanick, director of professional and industry relations, 3M ESPE Dental Division. “The NCOHF Oral Health Zone Program Summit provided an excellent forum for sharing solutions for increasing access to comprehensive oral health services for those children most in need.”
Speakers included Michele Darby, BSDH, MS; Amos Deinard Jr., MD, MPH; Thomas Engels; Carmen Fields, BA, MS; Fern Ingber, Med; Thomas Prescott; Leo Rouse, DDS, FACD; and Rebecca Slayton, DDS, PhD. Attendees learned about educational resources designed to engage children in taking charge of their own oral health and promote preventive strategies such as the Hands-On Learning Lab from Susan Maples, DDS, and Toothfairy Island. Andrew Bonner, BS, MBA, and Stanley Shepherd, Mb ChB, BSc, from Instant Access Medical and Health One Global discussed innovative personal electronic health record technology. Summit participants also were informed about other signature NCOHF programs designed to elevate the importance of children’s oral health in their communities. These programs include Students United for America’s ToothFairy, America’s ToothFairy Kids Club, Tomorrow’s SMILES and the Esther Wilkins International Education Program.
“The goal of the NCOHF Oral Health Zone Summit was to support and inspire those working so diligently to improve children’s oral health outcomes,” said Fern Ingber, MEd, NCOHF president and CEO. “The strategies, solutions and resources shared during the summit bring us one step closer to preventing the needless suffering of millions of children.”
National Children’s Oral Health Foundation, known as America’s ToothFairy, was formed in 2006 in an aggressive response to eliminate pediatric dental disease by providing community programs with the comprehensive resources to deliver vital educational, preventive, and treatment services to children of the most vulnerable populations. Through the generosity of supporters like Pelton & Crane, KaVo Americas and 3M ESPE, NCOHF has delivered nearly $10 million in direct funding, donated dental products and educational resources to its non-profit Affiliate network and community programs throughout North America reaching millions of children with oral health services.