273162 A Costly Dental Destination

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 11:15 AM - 11:30 AM

Shelly Gehshan, MPP , Pew Center on the States, The Pew Charitable Trust, Washington DC, DC
This presentation will present the findings of a recent report about the costs associated with emergency room (ER) treatment for toothaches and other avoidable dental ailments. A Costly Dental Destination estimates that preventable dental conditions were the primary reason for 830,590 ER visits by Americans in 2009—a 16 percent increase from 2006. The report concludes that states can reduce hospital visits, strengthen oral health and reduce their costs by making modest investments in prevention and improving access to care.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related public policy
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Describe the financial burden that states are shouldering due to visits to the emergency room for preventable dental problems. List the reasons this is happening, and the potential policy solutions that states have available to them to alleviate the financial and human costs associated with these trips to the ER.

Keywords: Communication, Policy/Policy Development

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I direct the Pew Children’s Dental Campaign, which issued a widely read report on inappropriate ER use for dental problems. I joined Pew in 2008, and before that spent 20 years working for 3 different groups of policymakers: governors, state legislatures and state health officials. My policy work has focused on low income women and children.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.