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DTA Foundation Grant Chat: Dental Therapy Curriculum for Distance Education

Vermont Technical College wants to help educate dental therapists and expand access to oral health care in Maine. This program will bring enormous benefits to patients thanks to your generous donations funding a $25,000 DTA Foundation grant.

Recently, we sat down with Vermont Technical College Dental Therapy Program Director Cheyanne E. Warren to find out more about the program and how others can implement a similar one.

What is your ultimate goal with this program?

To provide the didactic dental therapy curriculum at a distance and to be able to provide aspects of the clinical curriculum utilizing teledentistry. The goal is first, to educate dental therapists in order to expand access to oral health care. The reason for offering this education at a distance is to help students in Maine and increase the sustainability of the program. The other goal is to familiarize students with teledentistry so that they are familiar with the technology to be able to implement it in practice if needed.

How will this program help to improve oral health in your area?

Adding dental therapists to our clinic will increase access to oral health care as well as provide educated dental therapists that will expand access to care in this area and wherever they practice.

What advice would you give others considering implementing a program like yours?

Our advice is to:

1. Always think about sustainability.

2. Find as many supportive/strategic partners/stakeholders as possible.

3. Be adaptable.

Is there anything you’d like to say to the donors who make the DTA Foundation grants possible?

To DTA Foundation donors. Oral health is such an important part of overall health and quality of life. We cannot thank you enough for your commitment to this basic need and we want you to know that our goal is to make this large, positive impact on the quality and quantity of oral health care delivered. Thank you for helping us realize this goal.