The results of a survey of approximately 7,900 dentists in New Jersey by the Matheny Medical and Educational Center’s Institute for Research indicates that only 211 dentists in the state serve persons with developmental disabilities. The Institute for Research had been awarded a grant from the New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities to conduct the survey.
The database of dentists who provide this service is available to the public on www.disabilityhealth.org/dental. Dentists were asked to indicate whether or not they or their staff have training in special care dentistry; whether or not their offices are accessible; whether or not they accept Medicaid; and other pieces of information that are of importance to persons who have developmental disabilities. Dentists were given the opportunity to elect whether or not to have portions of their information made publicly available, so this database represents those dentists who responded to the survey and wished to have portions of their data made available to the public. This project was modeled after one that is currently in operation in Massachusetts, conducted by the Eunice Shriver Center at the University of Massachusetts.
The mission of Matheny’s Institute for Research is to conduct research and disseminate findings that enhance the lives of individuals with developmental disabilities, their families and those who work with them. The Institute operates under the direction of Kenneth Robey, Ph.D., who can be reached at (908) 234-0011, ext. 716, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Matheny operates a dental clinic in partnership with UMDNJ-New Jersey Dental School, with funding support from the New Jersey Health Initiatives Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Delta Dental Plan of New Jersey Foundation. Matheny’s dental clinic operates three days a week and treats six to eight patients a day. The clinic could be open more frequently, but reimbursement from Medicaid covers less than 50% of its costs and, no additional funding is currently available.
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