Washington — The Action for Dental Health Act, legislation aimed at improving oral health and access to oral health care, is now law.
President Donald J. Trump signed the bill Dec. 11. The final bill passed Congress Nov. 28.
The ADA, which has championed the Action for Dental Health initiative since 2014, applauded the bill’s passage.
“This is a tremendous victory for dentistry and patients everywhere,” said ADA President Jeffrey M. Cole in a statement. “The Action for Dental Health initiative shows what our profession stands for, which is that all Americans deserve good dental health. The ADA is pleased to see Congress prioritizing legislation that will improve access to oral health care and help prevention and outreach programs to combat dental disease before it starts.”
The legislation, originally introduced by Reps. Robin Kelly, D-Ill, and Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, passed the House in February. In October it passed the Senate, where it was sponsored by Sens. Cory Booker, D-N.J., Bill Cassidy, R-La., Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, and Tim Scott, R-S.C.
By passing the bill, the Action for Dental Health Act will allow organizations to qualify for oral health grants to support activities that improve oral health education and dental disease prevention. It will also enable groups to develop and expand outreach programs that facilitate establishing dental homes for children and adults, including the elderly, blind and disabled.
“This bipartisan bill means that more families will have access to oral and dental health care,” said Rep. Kelly in a statement. “This increased access to care means that patients will receive early detection and intervention resulting in better outcomes, reduced costs and improved health.”
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