Dental care is the greatest unmet need for health services among children. A new brief from Pew Center on the States surveys the remarkable impact that one program in Washington state made in confronting dental disease among Medicaid-insured children under age six.
Since its inception in 1994, the Access to Baby and Child Dentistry (ABCD) program has been established in 30 of Washington's 39 counties and demonstrated impressive results:
ABCD fosters strong collaboration between dentists, public health leaders and parents to achieve its goals, including:
The program's resilience, even amid state budget shortfalls, is a tribute to its solid results and efficient public-private financing model. Other states would be smart to consider the approach taken by Washington's policy makers and dental health community.
Download the brief for a full examination of how the successful ABCD program was built.