Florida’s Dental Care Crisis Highlighted Through Personal Stories and Data
Dental care has emerged as the most unmet healthcare need in Florida, prompting a group to facilitate the sharing of personal stories to shed light on the issue. An online platform, organized by the American Children’s Campaign and Floridians for Dental Access, features testimonies from across the state. Among these stories is that of a Broward County woman who suffered repeated infections during pregnancy due to an inability to afford dental care. The collected narratives are being utilized to delve deeper into the oral health issues affecting Florida. In 2020, less than half of Medicaid beneficiaries under the age of 20 received preventive dental care, a statistic exacerbated by about two-thirds of Medicaid-enrolled children in Florida missing out on essential services. A survey by the Florida Department of Health revealed that nearly 80% of Florida dentists do not accept Medicaid patients. The primary concerns are the high cost of dental care and limited access to services, with the majority of dentists operating within private practices, while less than 5% work in publicly funded dental offices and community clinics. This initiative aims to raise awareness and address Florida’s oral health crisis, emphasizing the pressing need for change in the state’s approach to dental care. Click here to learn more.