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‘Points of Light’. Presented to the Michigan Oral Health Coalition January 30, 2008. Enduring Goals of the Organized Dental Community :. Improve the Oral Health of the Citizenry. Improve Access to Oral Health Care. Improve the effectiveness of Oral Health Care delivery systems.

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Points of light

‘Points of Light’

Presented to the

Michigan Oral Health Coalition

January 30, 2008

Enduring goals of the organized dental community
Enduring Goals of the Organized Dental Community:

  • Improve the Oral Health of the Citizenry.

  • Improve Access to Oral Health Care.

  • Improve the effectiveness of Oral Health Care delivery systems.

  • Improve the Oral Health of Children, (MAPD).

Defining the issue michigan
Defining the Issue: Michigan

  • ~ 130,000 live births/year

  • Nationally, 15 to 17 million children without access to oral health care (increasing).

  • ~900K of Michigan’s 2.5 million kids are Medicaid eligible, (increasing).

  • Decay rates are on the rise in pre-school children (4% in last 10 years; CDC, 07)

  • 58% of Michigan 3rd Graders have caries.

Dentistry in michigan by the numbers
Dentistry in Michigan: By the Numbers

  • 82 pediatric dentists of which an estimated 84% (~70) see 1 year olds.

  • 4630 general dentists, (MDA, 08)

  • Evidence suggests that Pediatric Dentist migrate to upper income communities.

  • There will never be enough Pediatric Dentists and most general dentists are not comfortable treating very young children.

Good doctors treat disease great doctors prevent disease
Good doctors treat disease.Great doctors prevent disease.

Justifying ioh general overview
Justifying IOH: General Overview

  • Demographics of the Professional Communities, (Medical and Dental).

  • Cariology that defines: Primary Prevention vs. Secondary Prevention that create timing dependant opportunities.

  • Economic Implications that define the impact on dental practices and lower the cost of managing low SES populations.

  • Culminating in a new ‘Best Practice’.

Addressing the needs of michigan s infants
Addressing the Needs of Michigan’s Infants

  • Currently: 130,000 live births =>1800 new patients/pediatric dentist/year.

  • If all Pediatric Dentists accepted infants = ~1500 infants/year.

  • If all Dentists accepted infants = ~27 infants/year. (If only half see infants = ~ 60 infants/year)

  • Conclusion: This is possible!


  • Improving the Oral Health of the entire community. (Not just low SES, because low SES will benefit along with the community)

  • Enacting the ‘Atlas Concept’: Taking responsibility for all patients within a community regardless of the fact that they will never walk into your practice.

Advocacy goals
Advocacy Goals:

  • To improve the Health and Oral Health of the Citizenry, (Pan SES).

  • To Create behavioral transitions in arenas of impact: Dentistry, Medicine, Legislative, General Public.

  • To have infants presented to a ‘Dental Home’ for primary prevention rather than surgical intervention.

The challenge of providing care to low ses
The Challenge of providing care to Low SES:

  • Medicaid covers 25% of children and 33% of infants

  • Nationally, 27 million children are covered by Medicaid. (Michigan: 1:1.5)

  • Economic distress is increasing , impacting middle income families. These are NOT ‘Welfare Deadbeats’!

Relationships are not about obligation relationships are about opportunity
Relationships are not about obligation. Relationships are about opportunity.

  • This tenant pertains to all relationships.

  • If you not looking at relationships from this perspective, you are really missing the point of relationships altogether.

  • What opportunities can you create for your patients and your community?

Caring for our poorest and most vulnerable
Caring for our poorest and most vulnerable: about opportunity.

  • Consider that children seen early are less costly to care for over time.

  • Consider that, with very young patients, preventing decay is far easier than restoring teeth.

  • Consider that children with less complex restorative needs are less likely to require referral to a pediatric dentist.

Involvement vs commitment

Involvement vs. Commitment: about opportunity.

The difference between involvement and commitment is like an eggs & ham breakfast. The chicken was ‘involved’, the pig was ‘committed’!

Ongoing efforts
Ongoing Efforts about opportunity.:

  • Varnish! Michigan

  • Adopt-a-Head Start program

  • Early Head Start & Head Start Programs

  • PA 161

  • Community Dental Health Coordinator

Ideal dental care dental home
Ideal Dental Care: ‘Dental Home’ about opportunity.

  • Ongoing relationship between the dental office and the family.

  • Care that is Comprehensive

  • Care that is Accessible

  • Care that is family-centered

  • Care that is Culturally-effective

  • Care that you would want for your child

Meta questions
Meta-Questions: about opportunity.

  • How do we improve the oral health of very young children?

  • How do we lower the cost of providing oral health care to low SES populations?

  • How do improve the oral health of the community at large?

  • How do we best utilize our workforce?

What is points of light
What is ‘Points of Light’? about opportunity.

Organizational transition changing behaviors on a large scale
Organizational Transition: about opportunity.Changing Behaviors on a large scale

# of Adopters

Tipping Point





(early adopters)

(late adopters)

Social proof

‘Social Proof’ about opportunity.

A behavior that has reached a ‘tipping point’ within a given population group resulting in mass adoption and participation, (Herd Behavior).

i.e., stock runs, fads, voting tends, drug use, suicides, movie attendance, etc….

Organizations of interest
Organizations of Interest: about opportunity.

  • The General Public: Parents & children.

  • Dentistry: General Dentists, Pediatric Dentists, Dental Hygienists, etc…

  • Medicine: Pediatricians, Family Practice, Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, etc…

  • Legislative Bodies: Federal, State & local.

  • Educational Institutions: Pre & Post Doctoral Programs in Medicine and Dentistry.

Organizations of impact
Organizations of Impact about opportunity.




General Public


Points of light1
“Points of Light” about opportunity.

  • Identify a ‘Point Dentist’ within a community.

  • Establish a dental provider network, ‘EPII’.

  • Provide the EPII list to Pediatric Medical Providers.

  • Interact with medical providers, ‘ECTAMR’.

  • Educate medical providers, AAP policy.

  • Operationalize ‘Points of Light’ locally.

  • Operationalize ‘Points of Light’ state wide.

  • Infant Dental Exams become a ‘Social Proof’.

Three levels of advocacy
Three Levels of Advocacy about opportunity.:

  • Bronze Level: Initiating an Infant Oral Health program in your practice.

  • Silver Level: Instigating ‘Infant Oral Health’ Programs in your community, (EPII).

  • Gold Level: Developing a multi-community project that impacts the entire state over time, (Points of Light).

Antonio de saint exup ry

-Antonio de Saint-Exup about opportunity.éry

“Life has taught us that love does not consist in gazing at each other but in looking outward together in the same direction”

Question comments
Question/Comments about opportunity.

Mohc thank you
MOHC, Thank You!! about opportunity.