State lawmakers play a major role in advancing the quality of Americans’ lives, from helping to protect the air we breathe and water we drink, to educating our children. By researching emerging topics and developing 50-state comparisons, Pew identifies innovative approaches states are using to help solve complex challenges. Pew also conducts extensive research and analysis to understand how states can better serve the public, and we work with states to develop data-driven, pragmatic solutions to issues such as children’s dental health, the growing costs of incarceration, the need for cost-effective, high-quality home visiting programs, public pensions, and making voting more accurate, convenient, and secure.
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Health Affairs: Expanding Where Dental Therapists Can Practice Could Increase Americans’ Access to Cost-Efficient Care
Since 1923, more than 50 countries have improved access to dental care by allowing midlevel providers—frequently called dental therapists—to offer preventive and restorative treatment, primarily in the public sector, including in schools. A growing body of research has found that dental therapists provide high-quality, cost-effective treatment and improve access to care for... Read More
The challenge of balancing pension costs with the need to recruit and retain a strong workforce has prompted policymakers in many states to take a closer look at how they provide retirement benefits. A number of states with defined benefit (DB), or traditional, pension plans have policies that allow them to retain the core elements of the benefit while sharing the risk of cost increases—as... Read More
A number of states with defined benefit, or traditional, pension plans have enacted policies that retain the core elements of the plans while sharing the risk of cost increases—as well as potential gains—between public employees and employers. These mechanisms for sharing costs can help reduce volatility and investment uncertainty while preserving the ability to pay promised pension benefits. Read More
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