The Weekly Wednesday Update is our newsletter which we email every Wednesday with oral health, health and policy updates from around the state and nationally.

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December 4, 2019
Volume 10, Issue 48


Improving Access To Oral Health Care In Pregnancy

It’s important for pregnant women to take care of their oral health and to have access to dental care. The Children’s Dental Health Project, in collaboration with the University of North Carolina Adams School of Dentistry, released a new brief that provides an overview of dental coverage available to pregnant women in Medicaid, including comprehensiveness and duration of dental benefits. Read the issue brief here.



Goddard, Kansas Passes Ordinance

Yesterday in Goddard, Kansas, the Goddard City Council passed an ordinance prohibiting the possession of vaping products by minors. The ordinance is separate from another ordinance prohibiting the possession of tobacco products by minors. On Monday, the Goddard City Council voted in favor of an ordinance that will supersede the state penalty of $25 for a minor in possession of a pod, which can contain liquid with nicotine or THC. Read more about the ordinance here.

To learn more about vaping/e-cigarettes and tobacco, OHK has several helpful resources on our website.



Kansan To Kansan Listening Tour

Governor Laura Kelly has been visiting communities across the state this fall on her Kansan to Kansan budget listening tour. The next tour is on December 11. The Governor wants to hear from each of you about what your priorities are for the coming year's Kansas state budget. Following a brief presentation about the budget from Governor Kelly, attendees will be divided into groups to discuss their budget priorities.

What oral health budget priorities can you advocate for?

  • Funding for increased reimbursement rates for Medicaid dental providers
  • Funding for Kansas Department of Health and Environment Bureau of Oral Health
  • Funding for comprehensive dental benefits for adults on Medicaid

The meeting will be from 5pm-7:30pm at the University of Kansas Health System, Westwood Campus, Westwood Atrium, 2330 Shawnee Mission Pkwy, Westwood, Kansas.



Attend KanCare Expansion 2020: What's Next?

Alliance for a Healthy Kansas will be hosting an event on December 10 with special guests Lt. Gov. Lynn Rogers and Julie Brewer of United Community Services of Johnson County. Learn more about the impact of KanCare expansion on rural hospitals and what we can do to ensure more Kansans receive the mental health care they need. For more information and to register, click here.



Oral Care Gifts For This Holiday

Trying to figure out what to put in your children's stockings on Christmas? Why not items to help with their oral health? Instead of giving them toys, give them a fun toothbrush and floss to remind them to throw out their old toothbrush and to remember to floss. You can also give them sugar free gum or candy. Try not to give them candy that will stick to their teeth. Gum with the ingredient xylitol boosts dental health and helps prevent tooth decay.

For the December month, have a brushing calendar in the bathroom for your child to mark off each day he brushes! The holidays are busy but not too busy to brush!





This year’s 2019 Outstanding Dental Hygienist award was given to Laura Gigstad. Laura Gigstad established The Bright Smiles Program in 2016 as an independently run program serving Jefferson County with school-based preventative dental care. She did this while working in a private dental practice. In mid-2017, the program became part of the Lawrence-based Heartland Community Health Center, as the school-based dental outreach program in their integrated primary care practice. Laura partnered with Heartland Community Health Center to expand the Bright Smiles into neighboring communities to reach more children in need of oral health services. Led by Laura, Bright Smiles exists to serve low-income children in need of services. It also helps establish a dental home for students in five public school districts, an alternative learning school, a Head Start program and a WIC program. Bright Smiles serves over 400 children each year.

Laura truly cares about her community and her patients!



Reserve Now For The End Of The Year

Don't wait until the new year to book your sugary drink display. Get your reservation in before another month gets booked! Or purchase a Sugary Drink Display to have as your own!

What is a Sugary Drink Display? It's our drink display that has 10 popular beverages and shows how much sugar is in each. You can reserve a child drink display or an adult drink display for a month.

We will do our best to fulfill requests of less than 30 days but there is no guarantee.

There is no charge to use the Sugary Drink Display; postage is reimbursed if you send in your receipt. All we ask is for you to fill out our survey included in the display materials and provide us with feedback about the display. Click here to make a reservation!

Interested in purchasing a Sugary Drink Display? Click here to download our brochure.



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