Serving the Underserved: How Kool Smiles Doctors Are Doing Good and Doing It Well

Kool Smiles doctors work hard every day to improve the health of the communities around them and make a real difference in dental access.

However, while more children than ever are able to access dental care thanks to the expansion of Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the “dental divide” still persists in many areas.

According to a recent survey by the Children’s Dental Health Project, 13 percent of parents said that their child was in need of dental care but unable receive it. Even among Medicaid beneficiaries, as many as 52 percent of children did not visit a dentist – likely due to cost or access issues.

That’s where Kool Smiles comes in – nearly 80 percent of our patients are Medicaid or CHIP enrollees. We’re proud to accept these insurance programs when other dental offices won’t and we’re able to do so while delivering better outcomes at a lower cost. A multi-year analysis by Dobson DaVanzo & Associates found that monthly Medicaid expenditures for Kool Smiles patients were 33 percent lower than for non-Kool Smiles patients. And as a result of this better care, our dentists needed to perform 15 percent fewer services overall.

However, we not only improve the communities we serve by providing great care – our dentists and team members are also doing good!

Uncompensated Care

While Medicaid and CHIP dental coverage greatly expands access for many, there are still children left in need. When it comes to delivering care to those children, Kool Smiles is proud to deliver free and reduced cost dental care.

Each year, dozens of our offices around the country participate in Sharing Smiles Day, where doctors and clinical staff volunteer their time to provide free dental care to uninsured children. Our most recent event saw more than 500 children receive needed care!

Our doctors also provide millions of dollars of uncompensated care to children who need specific dental procedures but where no reimbursement is available.

Community Outreach and Involvement

Members of our Kool Smiles team partner with local schools, charities, and health programs to deliver oral hygiene kits and dental education materials to children’s classrooms. And through our “Making it Memorable” program, our team members give back to their communities by taking part in events like family toy drives or local health fairs. This initiative has infused tens of thousands of dollars into local communities to date.

But Kool Smiles’ community involvement initiatives don’t end in our backyard. Through our Kool Doctors Giving Back initiative, we’ve partnered with humanitarian groups to send nearly a dozen doctors and other team members to Bolivia and Peru to perform free dental work on children in rural, underserved communities. True to our belief that every child, everywhere deserves a happy, health smile, Kool Smiles is proud to lend our doctors and other team members to serve humanitarian causes abroad.

As the nation’s largest dental provider serving Medicaid children and families, we are proud to be leading the way in not only creating dental access and improving health outcomes, but also in our involvement in the communities we serve!

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