Assessment of Mobile and Portable Dentistry Programs to Improve Population Oral Health

Authors: Margaret Langelier, MSHSA | Jean Moore DrPH, MSN, FAAN | Rachel Carter | Lauren Boyd, MPH | Carol Rodat, MA

Topics: Emerging Models and Innovations, Oral Health

Research Center: Oral Health Workforce Research Center

August 1, 2017

The volume and variety of mobile and portable oral health programs in the United States has increased in recent years. Increasingly capable portable imaging technologies and treatment modalities have evolved to enable oral health professionals to provide a range of oral health services in public facilities and other community settings with portable equipment or in mobile vans equipped with fixed dental suites.

This report describes the various structural configurations of portable and mobile oral health service delivery programs and details regulatory variation by state for mobile and portable dentistry programs. The authors also discuss the various populations targeted for services by these programs and examine, where possible, the outcomes of early and ongoing preventive interventions through portable dentistry in underserved communities.

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