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Dental organizations plan Multicultural Oral Health Summit

May 21, 2012

By Karen Fox, ADA News staff


Boca Raton, Fla.—The ADA is participating in an historic occasion here in July, the Multicultural Oral Health Summit.

Planned and organized by the National Dental Association, the Hispanic Dental Association and the Society of American Indian Dentists, the event provides a venue for stakeholders to discuss oral health issues that impact diverse communities throughout the nation.

The Multicultural Oral Health Summit takes place July 19-23 at the Boca Raton Resort and Club. The boards of NDA, HDA, SAID and the ADA are holding a Leadership Development Program on July 19, a first-ever coming together of these organizations to focus on ways to improve governance and joint planning. The ADA Board of Trustees’ Diversity Committee, President William Calnon, President-elect Robert Faiella and Executive Director Kathleen O’Loughlin will be in attendance.

Due to the historic nature of the event, the ADA is supporting the summit along with a number of other sponsors.

“We’re excited to participate in the Multicultural Oral Health Summit and look forward to the opportunity to collaborate with SAID, HDA and NDA to identify initiatives that all stakeholders can support to address oral health disparities and access for the underserved,” said Dr. Calnon.

The event also marks the first joint convention of HDA, NDA and SAID. Continuing education and ceremonial events that reflect the rich culture and tradition of each group are on the agenda. Dentists, hygienists, assistants, faculty and administrators, public sector leaders, other associations, technical exhibitors and corporations are expected to attend.

“Our organizations share a common bond—communities that have been traditionally underserved and providers that have been woefully underrepresented in the health professions,” said Dr. Sheila R. Brown, NDA immediate past president. “I look forward to this collaboration and to future collective efforts to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities in America.”

“The Society of American Indian Dentists is excited to continue the collaborating efforts of organizations representing underserved populations,” said Dr. Ruth Bol, SAID president. “American Indians continue to live in communities where there is an up to 90 percent tooth decay rate. This meeting will be the first of its kind to bring together the very professionals that will help to make the greatest impact on the oral health crises.”

“The Hispanic Dental Association looks forward to this monumental event,” said Margo Y. Melchor, HDA immediate past president. “As an inclusive organization, HDA is very proud of the collaborations we have formed with NDA and SAID. This summit will enable the membership of the three unique ethnic dental organizations to unite and focus on the similar efforts of our missions: the elimination of oral health disparities.”

Registrations for the Multicultural Oral Health Summit are accepted at, or