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Rio Salado College offers Community Dental Health Coordinator program

Aug. 3, 2015
Arizona college is now the third higher-learning institute to offer the CDHC program.
Rio Salado College in Tempe, Arizona, is offering an online certificate program that trains community health workers to help bring better dental health to people in underserved communities. Classes for the Community Dental Health Coordinator (CDHC) program, created by the American Dental Association (ADA) in 2006, begin on August 25. The class is limited to certified dental assistants and registered dental hygienists. The registration deadline was August 1, but may be extended, provided students have most requirements fulfilled by August 1. CDHCs are trained to provide oral health education and disease prevention, and to help people navigate the public health system to receive care from dentists. Rio Salado College hosted the initial ADA CDHC pilot program, from which 34 people graduated.

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Mattia College in Miami and Central New Mexico Community College in Albuquerque are also offering the CDHC program.

“CDHCs truly are making headway in improving access to care for people living in communities suffering disproportionately from dental disease,” said ADA President Maxine Feinberg, DDS. “We are excited about the extent to which these future CDHCs can help break down the barriers impeding people from attaining good oral health.”

Rio Salado’s classes will take place during three 16-week trimesters, followed by internships. Approximately 10 students will be accepted.

The college is offering the program to prospective CDHC students in Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington State, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming and the District of Columbia.

“This program will not only be an asset to dentists in Arizona, but to dentists throughout the country,” said Arizona Dental Association Executive Director Kevin Earle. “We are thrilled that Rio Salado is again hosting this wonderful program, which will ensure that more Arizona residents, as well as others throughout the country, will be able to enjoy good oral health.”

For more information about the program, visit Rio Salado College’s website.