Milwaukee County Dental Access Directory Connects Patients to Hard-to-Find Dental Services

Access to oral health services for community members enrolled in Medicaid or who are uninsured continues to be a significant challenge in Milwaukee County. To increase access for our most vulnerable residents, the Milwaukee Health Care Partnership (MHCP) has served as the catalyst for and co-founder of the Milwaukee Oral Health Coalition (MOHC) since 2012.  Hosted by Children’s Health Alliance of Wisconsin (Alliance), the coalition currently focuses on the assessment of dental access needs and the implementation of a community-wide oral health improvement plan.

As part of the current improvement plan – MOHC recently published the Milwaukee County Dental Access Directory to support the understanding of and navigation to preventative, restorative, and emergency dental services in Milwaukee County. The directory aims to provide the community with accurate dental clinic access information, including the location, hours, payment practices, languages spoken, and types of dental services provided.

“With a scarcity of dental resources for populations at higher risk for dental disease, it is critical that the community and providers have a trusted source of information to reference,” said Matt Crespin, executive director of the Alliance. “We hope this directory increases access to services in real-time through a greater understanding of what is available and who is eligible.”

The directory can be accessed on the oral health page of the Children’s Health Alliance of Wisconsin website and is kept up-to-date and maintained by the MOHC team.

Additional MOHC goals include informing state and local policy, enhancing care navigation and coordination, and improving Medicaid MCO dental access and network adequacy. The coalition also works to monitor and support prevention, early intervention, and access for priority populations, including children ages birth to school-aged, pregnant women, and people with special needs.