Idaho meets five of the eight policy benchmarks aimed at addressing children's dental health needs. Idaho led the nation in Medicaid utilization; in 2009, the state reported that more than two-thirds of enrolled children received dental care.
Oral health for low-income kids became an issue in the 2010 gubernatorial campaign when the company managing the Idaho Smiles program briefly reduced the number of dentists in its provider network.1 The state still lags behind in regard to water fluoridation; less than one-third of Idaho's residents on community systems receive optimally fluoridated water.
1. K. Soderlund, “DentaQuest reinstates Medicaid dentists in Idaho,” American Dental Association News,” October 25, 2010; http://www.ada.org/news/4931.aspx, (accessed December 6, 2010,)