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Funded Projects

Oral Health Primary Care Partnership Program

Project Website

Grant Status: Active

Training Category: Healthy Tomorrows Partnership for Children Program (HTPCP)

Project Director(s):

Cheryl Janssen
Executive Director
Kids Smiles, Inc.
3751 Island Avenue
Philadelphia, PA  19153
Phone: 215-365-1033


Kids Smiles is requesting $250,000 to implement the Oral Health Primary Care Partnership Program in the West Philadelphia Promise Zone. The area demonstrates uneven outcomes and health inequalities for large segments of the population such as those who are poor and individuals of color. Key socio-cultural factors contributing to disparate minority health conditions identified in research that are reflected in the health status of West Philadelphia Promise Zone residents include unstable housing, low-income, unsafe neighborhoods, and substandard education. Oral health data indicates children experience lack of access to oral health services as a result of poverty and lack of providers that accept Medicaid, barriers to services as a result of distrust of the health care system, and lack of oral health knowledge.

Goals and Objectives:

Goal 1: By 2024, increase access to physical and oral health care and preventive services for children, adolescents, and families in Philadelphia by implementing clinical public health interventions in the PCOM Lancaster Avenue primary healthcare center and one Federally Qualified Health Center in an underserved area. Goal 2: By 2024, collaborate with community partners and stakeholders to develop replicable practices that promote the integration of pediatric oral and primary healthcare systems for children and families in the West Philadelphia Promise Zone and a Federally Qualified Health Center. Goal 3: Upon funding, implement evaluation strategies that encompass the Rapid Cycle Quality Improvement (RCQI) approach to program monitoring and assessment.


The project services will include integrated oral health and primary health care provided to low-income children, development of a training program for medical students that will enable them to understand and respond to the links between oral and physical health, and conducting an oral health waiting room education program and training for community partners. The project will also create a needs assessment and will establish an Advisory Board to participate in project planning, implementation and evaluation.


The project will coordinate with the Pennsylvania College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) Lancaster Avenue primary healthcare center, the Pennsylvania College of Osteopathic Medicine medical student program, Turning Points for Children, the Title V Maternal Child Health Program and the PA Department of Health, a current HRSA grantee.


The evaluation plan for the proposed project is based on the goals and objectives identified in the project narrative and considers additional elements that reveal the aspects of the project that are particularly effective in increasing access and quality of oral health prevention and treatment. Targeted outcomes include: Provide children with 9,800 preventive dental visits in two PCOM primary care centers by the end of the project period; By the end of 2024, provide 3,000 oral health educational lessons in PCOM primary care center waiting rooms; Baseline data is available to describe oral health needs in targeted communities; Advisory Board is established; 168 medical students participate in an oral health training program; 50 community partners receive oral health literacy education.