We propose a continuation and extension of our ongoing work, whose goal is the elimination of oral health disparities through research, training and action.
We aim to accomplish this goal in our targeted populations, and beyond, by leading a multidisciplinary and multi-institutional collaboration that is based on early and continuous community engagement, focused community-based research interventions, integrated training and career development activities, broad dissemination and implementation of research findings, and targeted health policy initiatives. Our enthusiasm for the work that we are proposing, as well as our confidence in the ability to meet our Center's aims, are based on our extensive experience to date and on what we have learned and accomplished over the past six years in leading a similar effort with as broad a geographic reach. The organizational structure and components of the Center, our experienced and multidisciplinary team of investigators, along with the strength of the institutional support we continue to receive from Boston University and our other partnering institutions, should serve to ensure our ability to conduct two major community-based intervention research projects aimed at reducing early childhood caries. The organizing theme of the work proposed builds on our current efforts to identify effective means by which to engage nondental care providers in oral health promotion, and to further extend the venues for oral health promotion to non-clinical care and residential settings directly in underserved communities. We are thus proposing two major community-based intervention research projects that will be implemented in: (1) community health centers, by medical care providers in the context of the pediatric well-child visit, linking oral health promotion efforts to developmentally appropriate anticipatory guidance and scheduled preventive visits (e.g., linked to immunization schedules); (2) public housing developments, by public housing residents who have been trained to be peer health promoters (Resident Health Advocates), aimed at families with young children living in Boston public housing.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research (NIDCR)
Specialized Center--Cooperative Agreements (U54)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZDE1-MS)
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Boston University
United States
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