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Other Resources Needed to Support Programs

Rural oral health programs require different resources. The types of resources needed depend on the goals of the program and the program model. Education and outreach programs require culturally appropriate curricula and education materials. Mobile dental van programs require a reliable vehicle that can hold portable dental equipment and supplies. Clinic-based programs require space and supplies, among other resources. General categories of resources include:

Community support
Programs have developed advisory committees to gain community support. Advisory committees may include dentists and dental hygienists, administrative personnel from the hospital and dental school in the community, and staff from Area Health Education Centers (AHECs).

Training materials
Programs require materials and curricula that can help staff to provide services to the target population. If the program has an educational component, it is important to use education and outreach materials that are tailored to the unique cultural and linguistic needs of the population served.

Dental clinic programs or outreach programs may distribute supplies such as brochures, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and dental floss to individuals.

Some oral health programs rely on schools and other organizations to donate space for education or dental clinic activities. For example, a local hospital may house a dental clinic.

Mobile dental van programs require a reliable vehicle that can hold portable dental equipment and other supplies.

Programs that provide sealants or fluoride varnish to children in schools need to secure permission from the school and from parents.

Programs may need to purchase insurance for some of their program components. For example, in order to serve patients in a mobile dental van, programs will need to buy auto insurance.

Resources to Learn More

Dental Forms Library
The National Network for Oral Health Access Dental Forms Library is a collection of forms in use by safety-net oral health programs across the country. These sites are sharing their forms to allow other programs to have a reference in developing their own material.
Organization(s): National Network for Oral Health Access

A Guide for Developing and Enhancing Community Oral Health Programs
This guide is designed to help local public health agencies to develop, integrate, expand or enhance community oral health programs. It provides information on mobilizing community support, assessing needs and existing resources, planning the program, implementing the program, evaluating the program and participating in policy development and research.
Organization(s): American Association for Community Dental Programs (AACDP)

Practice Management: How to Start a Dental Clinic
This toolkit provides information about resources that are useful in setting up a dental clinic.
Organization(s): National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center

Safety Net Dental Clinic Manual
The online manual describes the steps involved in launching a dental clinic. It includes 6 modules with a variety of tools and resources.
Organization(s): National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center