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Statement by American Dental Association President Gary Roberts, D.D.S., on the Trump Administration’s FY 2018 Budget Proposal

March 21, 2017

Robert Raible

Washington, D.C. — “The American Dental Association is alarmed by some of the proposals in the Trump Administration’s fiscal year 2018 budget. The president’s proposed cuts could have severe negative impacts on oral health research and access.

“The unprecedented $5.8 billion in cuts aimed at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the nation’s premier center for health care research and funding, for example, would dramatically impact NIH’s core mission. 

“The Association is also concerned by the White House proposal to push for NIH ‘reorganization.’ Though the budget included no details, the ADA urges Administration officials and Congress to retain the independence of individual institutes. As an independent agency within NIH, the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) has a long history of funding vital research that has led to improvements in oral health for all Americans. 

“As for access, the ADA believes the proposed reduction in funds directed to the Department of Health and Human Services are too severe and could affect programs administered by Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) that strategically focus on improving care for underserved and at-risk groups in every state and U.S. territory.  Residency training programs for pediatric and general dentistry provide primary oral health care services in some of the nation’s most remote and underserved locations. 

“On behalf of the ADA and its 161,000 member dentists, I urge congressional appropriators to consider the Trump Administration’s budget proposal very carefully. Cutting health funding so dramatically would be a huge step backwards after years of progress in improving the nation’s oral health.”

Editor’s Note: Reporters are invited to follow the ADA on Twitter @AmerDentalAssn

About the ADA

The not-for-profit ADA is the nation's largest dental association, representing 162,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADA has advocated for the public's health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1859. The ADA's state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance long has been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products. The monthly The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA's flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit For more information on oral health, including prevention, care and treatment of dental disease, visit the ADA's consumer website