Pitt Logo LinkContact Us

A Critical Literature Synthesis of Low-Income Oral Health Disparities in the United States and Interventions for Improved Access to Care

Lubiejewski, Sarah (2011) A Critical Literature Synthesis of Low-Income Oral Health Disparities in the United States and Interventions for Improved Access to Care. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh.

[img]
Preview
PDF - Primary Text
Download (278Kb) | Preview

    Abstract

    Over a decade ago the United States Surgeon General released a report about oral health in America which highlighted the disparities that exist between high and low-income populations. The current rates of untreated dental disease in low-income adults and children remain higher in low-income populations. This literature review examines low-income oral health disparities in the United States and the interventions that have been completed to increase access to dental treatment. An unequal distribution of dental providers and high costs for treatments contribute to the access issues that low-income individuals experience. This paper examines interventions at the individual, community, and policy levels. Innovations such as making changes in the dental workforce and expanding the role of mid-level dental providers are discussed. Evidence from the literature suggests that changes in government sponsored insurance policies have had the greatest impact on access to dental treatment. Behavioral interventions have been successful at changing oral health behaviors but further research needs to be done on how to best change the behavior of seeking dental treatment. Increasing the role of primary care providers was identified as an interdisciplinary collaboration to increase access for children. The untreated dental disease of low-income populations is a significant public health problem and further research needs to be done to determine the most effective innovations and interventions to increase access to care.


    Share

    Citation/Export:
    Social Networking:

    Details

    Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
    ETD Committee:
    ETD Committee TypeCommittee MemberEmail
    Committee ChairTerry, Martha Annmaterry@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberPolk, Deborahdpolk@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberGuadamuz, Thomas Eteg10@pitt.edu
    Title: A Critical Literature Synthesis of Low-Income Oral Health Disparities in the United States and Interventions for Improved Access to Care
    Status: Unpublished
    Abstract: Over a decade ago the United States Surgeon General released a report about oral health in America which highlighted the disparities that exist between high and low-income populations. The current rates of untreated dental disease in low-income adults and children remain higher in low-income populations. This literature review examines low-income oral health disparities in the United States and the interventions that have been completed to increase access to dental treatment. An unequal distribution of dental providers and high costs for treatments contribute to the access issues that low-income individuals experience. This paper examines interventions at the individual, community, and policy levels. Innovations such as making changes in the dental workforce and expanding the role of mid-level dental providers are discussed. Evidence from the literature suggests that changes in government sponsored insurance policies have had the greatest impact on access to dental treatment. Behavioral interventions have been successful at changing oral health behaviors but further research needs to be done on how to best change the behavior of seeking dental treatment. Increasing the role of primary care providers was identified as an interdisciplinary collaboration to increase access for children. The untreated dental disease of low-income populations is a significant public health problem and further research needs to be done to determine the most effective innovations and interventions to increase access to care.
    Date: 29 June 2011
    Date Type: Completion
    Defense Date: 12 April 2011
    Approval Date: 29 June 2011
    Submission Date: 05 April 2011
    Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
    Patent pending: No
    Institution: University of Pittsburgh
    Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
    Refereed: Yes
    Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
    URN: etd-04052011-152415
    Uncontrolled Keywords: dental public health; dentistry; preventive treatment; untreated disease
    Schools and Programs: Graduate School of Public Health > Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
    Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 14:34
    Last Modified: 18 Apr 2012 14:31
    Other ID: http://etd.library.pitt.edu/ETD/available/etd-04052011-152415/, etd-04052011-152415

    Actions (login required)

    View Item

    Document Downloads