Oral Health Care for Persons with Developmental Disabilities
EIOH/Golisano Community Task Force Highlights
The following information has been compiled from the Task Force on Oral Health Needs of People with Developmental Disabilities.
Community Task Force Key Findings
Special Olympics Healthy Smiles
It’s estimated that a significant portion of the 135,000 people in New York with developmental disabilities live in the Finger Lakes region. Most live in community based group homes and rely on nearby providers for health and dental care. But providers who are adequately accredited or trained to care for these patients are few and far between.
Several factors contribute to the poor oral health and hygiene of people with developmental disabilities, including physical limitations, complex medical conditions, behavioral issues, and increased incidence of early decay. Other challenges arise due to access, transportation, insurance, and the small number of available dentists who can accommodate the unique needs of this population
Dental care is the most pressing healthcare need among people with developmental disabilities. That’s why Eastman Institute for Oral Health at the University of Rochester Medical Center partnered with the Golisano Foundation to gather data to better understand the depth and breadth of the situation.
Based on much input, solid information, plenary sessions with all stakeholders, and successful national models, our community task force developed a set of practical action-oriented recommendations for substantially improving the availability and accessibility of oral health care for people with developmental disabilities.
In cooperation with area educational institutions providing training for oral health providers and community social service organizations that serve people with developmental disabilities, these recommendations in turn will provide a firm foundation for aggressively seeking support from state and federal agencies and foundations for launching a program designed to significantly improve the oral health services available to all people with developmental disabilities living in the greater Rochester area.
More background, published papers and other insights into this situation locally and nationally.