Poor oral health and the inability to access oral health services is a reality for patients with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). Adults with disabilities are four times more likely to report their health to be only fair or poor than people without disabilities.
In 2021, to address the issue of dental care for patients with IDD, the American Dental Association Approved Resolution 49 which recommends expansion of training of dentists, hygienists, dental and dental hygiene students to meet the needs of the IDD population. As a result of this initiative, the OSU Nisonger Center was approached by the Delta Dental Foundation of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, and North Carolina (Delta Dental) to create this program. Delta Dental agreed to contractually support all expenses of the program and recruit participants.
The goal of this educational program is to improve access to oral health care for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD) in their communities through the creation of a psychologically and behaviorally based IDD dental certificate program focusing on oral health providers that are currently in practice.
This training will occur at the OSU Nisonger Center McCampbell Hall utilizing current Nisonger interdisciplinary faculty members. Often oral health providers are given minimal exposure to this population during their initial training. Through the creation of a didactic and supervised direct patient care program, we intend to improve practicing oral health providers' competency and willingness to care for individuals with IDD.