North Dakota meets five of the eight policy benchmarks for strengthening children's dental health— one more than it met last year. Hygienists in North Dakota are now allowed to place sealants under general supervision.1
Although the number of children ages one to 18 on Medicaid receiving dental services grew from 28.1 percent to 32.6 percent in 2008, dental services delivered to enrollees still lag behind services delivered to privately insured children. This will continue to be a challenge as Medicaid enrollment increases. It is estimated that in three years, the number of residents receiving Medicaid benefits will continue to grow, from 60,000 to 90,000.2
1. North Dakota State Board of Dental Examiners, “Procedures that can be delegated – supervision rules,” http://www.nddentalboard.org/pdf/Duties%20Delegated%20to%20RDH%20RDA.pdf, (accessed November 22, 2010).
2. D. Wetzel, “Health care reform means ND Medicaid expansion; officials estimate $106 million cost,” Associated Press, April 28, 2010.