In 2008, Arkansas ranked 50th in the nation in the ratio of dentists per 100,000 population.1 With half of the existing dental workforce nearing retirement age within the next 10 years, the Delta Dental of Arkansas Foundation supports dental education programs to help ensure that Arkansas has enough dentists to provide care.
Since Arkansas does not currently have an in-state dental school, the Delta Dental of Arkansas Foundation committed $1.5 million to the University of Tennessee College of Dentistry (UT) and $600,000 to the Louisiana State University School of Dentistry (LSU) to renovate their facilities. These renovations made it possible for 10 more Arkansas students to attend UT and six more Arkansas students to attend LSU each year.
The Delta Dental of Arkansas Foundation made a $2 million commitment to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) to renovate its dental clinic and create a dental residency program. The dental clinic includes 17 treatment rooms, a sedation suite and a conference facility with teledentistry capabilities. The UAMS Dental Residency Program – the first and only dental residency program in the state – will focus on advanced general dentistry and oral surgery. Applications to the residency program will be available upon the clinic’s completion in 2014.
More than 3 million reports of child abuse are documented each year. Research indicates that up to 75% of all reported cases of child abuse and neglect involve injuries to the head, neck and face areas, which are areas dental professionals routinely observe.2 The P.A.N.D.A. program provides a variety of educational programs and seminars to educate dental professionals and others about how to identify the warning signs of child abuse and neglect. To learn more about P.A.N.D.A., contact Delta Dental of Arkansas at 855-40-PANDA (855-407-2632) or firstname.lastname@example.org.