Report: More than 200,000 see impact of those dollars
Staff Reports | Free Press Philanthropy
The Delta Dental Institute has released its 2021 community impact report, highlighting the philanthropic investments that Delta Dental made nationally last year to support the oral and overall health of communities across the country.
According to the report, Delta Dental of Arizona contributed $1,727,180, impacting 211,530 individuals across the state.
A national leader in oral health giving, Delta Dental supported efforts and initiatives that expand access to care, advance health equity, build resilient communities, and innovate for a healthier tomorrow, according to a press release.
In total, Delta Dental invested $106 million in communities in 2021 — an increase over 2020 — and positively impacted more than 21.3 million lives, the release states.
“For nearly 70 years, Delta Dental has been driven by our mission to advance the oral and overall health of the people we serve and the communities we call home,” said James W. Hutchison, president & CEO, Delta Dental Plans Association. “We are proud to be one of the nation’s leaders in oral health giving and we look forward to continuing to collaborate with our communities and partners on the journey toward better health for all.”
Four areas of philanthropy
The 2021 Community Impact Report, “Our mission: your health,” explores four main areas of Delta Dental’s community impact efforts nationally:
Expanding access to care: Delta Dental supported dental treatment and prevention programs — such as free dental clinics — that reached 10 million people and helped 4.4 million more get access to fluoridated water.
- Advancing health equity: Delta Dental funded scholarships and grants for underrepresented students pursuing careers in oral health, including support for dental students at Howard University and Meharry Medical College, the only two HBCU dental schools in America. Delta Dental also reached more than 10 million people through oral health education programs, with a focus on underserved communities.
- Building resilient communities: Delta Dental expanded access to healthy food, supporting food drives and food banks that supplied more than 17 million meals, and prioritized sustainability through investing in water bottle-filling stations in schools and other efforts.
- Innovating for a healthier tomorrow: Delta Dental focused on the future by funding research and supporting new care models and technologies, like medical-dental integration and teledentistry, to help develop new solutions to improve care.
Delta Dental has also released a digital story detailing its community impact work, including an interactive map showcasing specific initiatives in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. In it, available here, Delta Dental of Arizona’s partnership with HonorHealth and Neighborhood Outreach Access to Health is featured.
Through the partnership, uninsured patients who visit any of five HonorHealth emergency rooms with dental issues are triaged, then directed to case workers to make appointments at NOAH Dental Clinics for treatment.
Also, transportation is arranged if needed, and patients are provided up to $1,500 in emergency dental services.
“Delta Dental of Arizona is dedicated to increasing access to oral health care and education for all individuals and families statewide. Without focused, intentional effort to support those within our community who do not have access to affordable, preventative care and oral health education, we cannot achieve this goal,” says Michael Jones, president and CEO of Delta Dental of Arizona.
“Through Delta Dental of Arizona Foundation’s grant programs and partnerships with organizations including ATSU Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health, Banner University Medical Center, Pacific Dental Services Foundation Dentists for Special Needs, St. Vincent de Paul, Phoenix Children’s Hospital, and Northern Arizona University College of Dental Hygiene, Delta Dental is proactively working to improve the oral health of more Arizonans every single day.”