Advancing Health Equity Through Dental Therapy

PowerPoint Slide Download
Advancing Health Equity Through Dental Therapy
CE Credits
1 hour

For more than 15 years, dental therapists have been working to improve access to oral care and increase health equity across the United States. They are currently permitted in 14 states and several Tribal nations. What have we learned about their role in the oral health industry so far? What might the future hold?

Join the APHA Oral Health Section and CareQuest Institute for a robust conversation about the potential benefits and concerns of expanding dental therapy. Our expert panel — including a dental sociologist, an advocate, and representatives from organized dentistry and dental hygiene — will explore the legal, organizational, and educational frameworks for the occupation. They’ll also look at the impact on quality of care and potential improvements in access and patient outcomes.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the history and origins of the dental therapy workforce through current educational standards and policy in the US.
  • Discuss evidence for how the dental therapy workforce has impacted access to dental care for underserved populations.
  • Discuss the benefits and best practices of expanding dental therapy in the US.
  • Explain the challenges and opportunities for maintaining a commitment to oral health equity with the spread of the dental therapy workforce.


Lyubov Slashcheva, DDS, MS, FABSCD, DABDPH, FICD, Chairperson, American Public Health Association Oral Health Section


Elizabeth Mertz, PhD, MA, Professor, University of California, San Francisco

Tamana Begay, DDS, Vice President, Diverse Dental Society

Ann Lynch, Director of Advocacy, American Dental Hygienists’ Association

Laura (Hale) Brannon, Project Manager, Dental Therapy, Community Catalyst

This webinar will be recorded.




CareQuest Institute for Oral Health is an ADA CERP Recognized Provider.
ADA CERP is a service of the American Dental Association to assist dental professionals in identifying quality providers of continuing dental education. ADA CERP does not approve or endorse individual courses or instructors, nor does it imply acceptance of credit hours by boards of dentistry. CareQuest Institute for Oral Health designates this activity for 1 continuing education credit.
This continuing education activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the standards of the ADA Continuing Education Recognition Program (ADA CERP) by CareQuest Institute for Oral Health.

All participating instructors in this program have disclosed that they have the following financial arrangement or affiliation with the listed persons or entity(ies) offering financial support, products, and/or services mentioned or related to the content of this program/activity. 
Lyubov Slashcheva, DDS
Corporate Organizations: AppleTree Dental, CareQuest Institute for Oral Health