Help Your Community Smile: Start or Enhance an Oral Health Program for Older Adults

June 14, 2017

Apple Tree is excited to share the announcement from the federal government of a new website designed to help communities across the country create oral health programs for older adults. Access to care for older adults is growing problem and many communities have few, if any programs designed to meet their needs. For the last two years, Dr. Helgeson, Apple Tree’s CEO, has served as a member of the subject matter expert group that created the new website. As an expert in geriatric and special care dentistry, Dr. Helgeson teamed up with other national experts to identify successful programs serving seniors, create a searchable database, and assemble a host of other helpful resources. Helping create programs for older adults with special access needs who face barriers to care is at the heart of Apple Tree’s mission.

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) and the Office on Women's Health (OWH) announce the launch of the Help Your Community Smile: Start or Enhance an Oral Health Program for Older Adults website ( ), including a database of nearly 200 vetted oral health programs and the Community Guide to Adult Oral Health Program Implementation (Oral Heath Guide).

The Community Guide to Adult Oral Health Program Implementation (Oral Health Guide) is a step by step guide to help people with the program development process, from assessing their community’s need for such services to ultimately evaluating their established program’s effectiveness—and everything in between. In addition, the Oral Health Guide contains templates, worksheets, and other interactive resources related to target population selection; vision, mission, and goals development; program design and implementation; partnership-building; funding; and more.

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