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Health and Medicine

A new study shows poor Ohioans often lack dental care
Dental expert says that not having dental care can lead to other health problems

Jo Ingles

Poor Ohioans who need dental care are finding it’s often hard to find a dentist who will provide it. David Maywhoor, the project director for Dental Access Now, says a new study finds there are places in Ohio where poor Ohioans cannot get access to dental care.

New study shows poor Ohioans often lack dental care

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“The Southeast part of the state (is) a significant area where the ratio between dentists and consumers who need them is greatest. But as you look around the state, you really see the same kind of problem replicated over and over again.
"Our urban areas -- Cleveland, Columbus and Hamilton counties -- appear to have an adequate number of dentists to consumer ratios. But when you begin looking at the communities in those urban areas, you still find where there are still places where people cannot get to dentists or where there are dentists who are not willing to take Medicaid patients.”

Maywhoor says not having dental care often leads to other major problems that require more expensive health care or can even cause deaths. The report suggests the state update its laws to allow for a new mid-level dental care provider who would help more Ohioans get basic dental care to prevent major problems.

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