Links & Articles



Enhancing the Roles of Public Health for Optimal Oral Health – OAPHD

 Oral health issues can cause pain, infection, and lead to chronic diseases, with physical, social, and psychological consequences. With a strong knowledge base in working with vulnerable groups experiencing challenges in accessing and receiving care, the Ontario Association for Public Health Dentistry (OAPHD) is committed to promoting universal access to appropriate oral health care for all Ontarians. 

  • The Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP) will expand access to oral health services for low-income, uninsured Canadians. However, the CDCP is not universal and will not address all oral health inequities. 
  • The current Ontario Public Health Standards (OPHS) lack standards for preventive oral health programs across the lifespan, with the major focus being on children and seniors. 
  • It is recommended that the MOH continues to invest in provincial public health prevention interventions to support a multifaceted, cost-effective life course approach to oral health promotion. This will help improve overall population health and support the success of the federal dental program. 
  • Overarching recommendations:
    • Continue to invest and sustain current oral health practices that are already underway within each of the roles of Public Health. 
    • Enhance investments in upstream, population – based roles for health promotion and disease prevention/delay. 
    • Expand downstream efforts to reach other marginalized groups facing barriers to accessing care. 

Download – Enhancing the Roles of Public Health for Optimal Oral Health – February 2024

Considerations for Aligning  Federal and Provincial Dental Programs to Improve Oral Health 

From the Ontario Dental Association, Ontario Dental Hygienists Association and Ontario Association of Public Health Dentistry this document offers considerations for the Ontario Ministry of Health and provincial oral health stakeholders for aligning federal and provincial dental programs. In addition, it provides context and outlines recommendations across eight key areas. Download – Considerations for Aligning Federal and Provincial Dental Programs to Improve Oral Health November 2023

Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program:
Recommendations to Ensure Program Effectiveness

Low-income seniors are a particularly vulnerable population with unique oral health needs. The Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program (OSDCP) will provide needed dental services to this population group. This program is intended to help reduce unnecessary trips to the hospital, prevent chronic disease and increase quality of life for seniors in Ontario. A group of experts on seniors’ oral health programming have written a white paper to the Ministry of Health with recommendations to ensure effective program design and implementation of the OSDCP. This group includes Ontario Association of Public Health Dentistry members from public health units (PHUs), the Alliance for Healthier Communities (representing Community Health Centres and Aboriginal Health Access Centres), and the Ontario Oral Health Alliance. See link to the white paper … Download – Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program: Recommendations to Ensure Program Effectiveness Submitted to the Ministry of Health July 2019

Low Wages No Benefits

A report from Wellesley Institute finds that one-third of workers in Ontario do not have medical or dental benefits and calls on the Ontario government to fund Public Health Units, Community Health Centres and Aboriginal Health Access Centres to provide oral health services to low income adults and seniors. Download ~ Low Wages No Benefits

Staying Ahead of the Curve

A unified public oral health program for Ontario?

OAPHD is pleased to have been part of the debate on getting publicly funded dental programs in Ontario work for all Ontarians. The strength of this report is in the views of its contributors on what needs to be done; and all authors agree that the current model of funding of oral health care programs through various provincial ministries and local/regional governments in Ontario is no longer sustainable and needs to be delivered more efficiently. As an association that promotes equity in oral health, we are concerned that the current delivery models in the province leave many vulnerable population behind. We call on the government and all stakeholders to act immediately on the recommendations made in this report and replace the current patchwork with a unified oral health program for all Ontarians.  Download ~ Staying Ahead of the Curve

Oral Health – More Than Just Cavities

This report raises awareness of the importance of oral health and equitable access to oral care services. Many Ontarians are not aware of the link between oral health and overall health. In addition, many Ontarians do not have access to affordable dental care.  Download – Oral Health – More Than Just Cavities

Report on Access to Dental Care and Oral Health in Ontario

This report provides a summary of oral health status and access to dental care among different socio-demographic subgroups in Ontario, using data from the 2005 Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS). This project was jointly funded by Public Health Ontario (PHO), the Population Health Improvement Research Network of the Applied Health Research Initiative, Government of Ontario and the Canadian Institutes for Health Research. Download – Report on Acess to Dental Care and Oral Health in Ontario


Government Funded Dental Programs in Ontario

This resource provides a summary of government funded dental programs in Ontario including details of eligibility, coverage and other useful program related information.

Oral Health Intervention Tool

Help local residents access publicly funded dental services and/or the most cost effective dental services in your community. Simply modify this template by inserting your own community dental health service information and distribute it to community partners and health care providers. You do not have to be part of a dental coalition to use this tool. It can be adapted for any community.
Click here to download


“Review of Oral Health Services in Ontario” ~ College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario (CDHO), November 2014

“Improving access to oral health care for vulnerable people living in Canada” ~ Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, August 2014

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