A Guide for Developing and Enhancing Community Oral Health Programs  
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Step 6. Participate in Policy Development and Research

A. Community Oral Health Policy

3. Policy Involvement Resources

Listed below are several Web sites and discussion lists that can be helpful in tracking and participating in discussions of current issues, thereby permitting oral health stakeholders to take part in the policy process.

American Association for Community Dental Programs (AACDP). AACDP promotes the availability of effective community oral health programs and develops resources that can be used to strengthen oral health at the community level.

American Association of Public Health Dentistry (AAPHD). AAPHD is a co-sponsor of the annual National Oral Health Conference and conducts an annual meeting.

ADA. ADA provides information and resources to oral health professionals.

State Dental Associations. State dental associations often track draft legislation and regulations, which are frequently disseminated for public comment before enactment. Contact information for state associations is also available at the Health Guide USA.

American Dental Education Association (ADEA). ADEA sponsors a variety of discussion lists that are available to members, along with a newsletter and a news reader service.

American Public Health Association (APHA), Oral Health Section. APHA's oral health section works to promote important oral health issues. The section has sponsored many resolutions that support public oral health policies, programs, and practices. APHA offers opportunities for promoting the integration of oral health into public health and facilitates interactions among public health colleagues from diverse disciplines and organizations.

Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors (ASTDD). ASTDD publishes a newsletter, Oral Health Matters, and provides action alerts to members. ASTDD also maintains a database of information about public oral health activities searchable by state and by topic. Contact information is provided with each summary. This resource provides information about state-specific projects. The Web site can also be searched to identify contact information for state-specific oral health coalitions.

Children’s Dental Health Project (CDHP). CDHP sends out electronic updates on national legislation and policy matters and provides a news clipping service with information on oral health referenced in various news sources around the country, including local newspapers. CDHP also develops special reports on current and emerging policy issues, including several related to Medicaid. CDHP has developed a number of reports focused on policy. These reports include the proceedings of two institutes specifically focused on working with policymakers on behalf of oral health. These reports are Working with Policymakers to Improve Oral Health and Working with Policymakers to Advance Oral Health.

National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). NCSL maintains a database that contains information gleaned from the home pages and Web sites of the 50 state legislatures, the District of Columbia, and the territories. Web site content materials (e.g., bills, press rooms, statutes) can be viewed from all states, one state, or a selected list of states. NCSL also maintains a federal/state issues section containing policy briefs on current issues as well as information about Webcasts in which a variety of policy issues are discussed.

National Association of Counties (NACO). NACO maintains a legislative action center with information about legislation affecting counties.

National Oral Health Policy Center (NOHPC). NOHPC seeks to identify policy roadblocks and improvements to accessing oral health care, with a particular focus on children and families with low incomes covered by Medicaid, who at are at high risk for chronic tooth decay. The center is also charged with identifying ways in which oral health may be better integrated with other health services. The center’s Web site provides information about a variety of oral health policy issues.

Oral Health America (OHA). OHA advocates for oral health and makes available a periodic electronic newsletter containing the latest news in oral health, legislative updates, and links to articles about oral heath.

Public Health Training Network (PHTN). This CDC-sponsored group is a distance-learning network of individuals and resources that takes training and information to the learner. PHTN uses a variety of instructional media ranging from print-based to videotape and multimedia to meet the training and information needs of the health work force nationwide. Of particular interest in the PHTN is The Legal Basis of Public Health Modules, which comprises 10 modules focused on policy development, public health law, regulations, and enforcement. This curriculum covers the process of drafting legislation and regulations and highlights methods for shaping the enactment of clear, effective, and enforceable laws and regulations.

Community Oral Health Program Discussion List (COHP). The COHP discussion list is a forum for communication between local oral health directors and personnel. The list facilitates discussion about the operation of oral health programs and allows participants to explore potential solutions and share ideas. The list is maintained and administered by OHRC (info@mchoralhealth.org). To join the list, individuals should complete the electronic form.

Dental Public Health Discussion List. This discussion list relates to oral public health. Anyone may join. The list is maintained and administered by Dr. Robert Weyant. To join the list, individuals should send a message to majordomo@list.pitt.edu. In the body of that message (not the subject line) type the following message: subscribe dental-public-health.

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Table of Contents Appendices AACDP References Home Appendices References Conclusion Step 6 Step 5 Step 4 Step 3 Step 2 Executive Summary Overview Step 1 Acknowledgements