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Dental Pilot Projects


Dental pilot projects offer a unique opportunity to address health disparities and create more equitable oral health care delivery systems by testing innovative ways to improve oral health practice, workforce, and access. In Oregon, we have a law that allows dental pilot projects to be in operation. Senate Bill 738 (passed by the Oregon State Legislature in 2011) allows the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) to approve and monitor dental pilot projects and ensure patient safety.
Dental pilot projects are community driven and intentionally designed to increase access to dental care for communities of color and other populations which evidence-based studies have shown to have the highest dental disease rates and the least access to dental care. Strategies to included in dental pilot projects include:
  • Teaching new skills to existing dental providers;
  • Developing new categories of dental providers;
  • Accelerating the training of existing dental providers; or
  • Teaching new oral health care roles to untrained people.
To contact Oregon’s Dental Pilot Project Program Coordinator, email or text/voice at 971-320-0108.
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Current Projects

The OHA has approved three dental pilot projects to date including:
Future projects may include testing the expansion of the scope of practice of dental assistants and other allied oral health providers.
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Frequently Asked Questions

The Frequently Asked Questions page covers more details about the Dental Pilot Project Program including who is eligible to apply, funding, types of projects, responsibilities of the OHA, overview of the Technical Review Board and Advisory Committee, and more.
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Patient Safety

OHA Roles and Responsibilities

The OHA is responsible for monitoring approved dental pilot projects to ensure patient safety and to determine the progress of each project in meeting its stated objectives and complying with program statutes and rules. Monitoring and evaluation efforts include, but are not limited to:
  • Reviewing progress reports
  • Conducting site visits (including chart review)
The OHA collaborates with a robust group of dental professionals around Oregon to ensure patient safety by reviewing progress reports and attending site visits.

Dental Pilot Projects Program Chart Review diagram.

Advisory Committees

Additionally, the OHA may convene an Advisory Committee for each approved dental pilot project. Each committee provides the OHA with the collective knowledge, experience, expertise, and insight of committee members to assist the OHA in meeting its responsibilities. Committee members are asked to review and provide advice on:
  • The efficacies of training, competencies, and data collection;
  • Project protocols related to the ongoing assurance of patient safety;
  • Evaluation of project progress reports as needed; and
  • Other project issues as needed throughout the duration of each pilot project.

Adverse Events

Adverse events must be reported to the OHA. The OHA Dental Pilot Projects Program conducted a webinar on March 9, 2020 on adverse event reporting requirements. Here are the webinar materials:

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Oregon Administrative Rules

Oregon's Dental Pilot Project Program is governed by laws and rules including:

If you would like more information about Oregon's Dental Pilot Project Program, email or text/voice at 971-320-0108.
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Subscribe for updates by email or text

Get updates by email or text
You can sign up for updates to the Oregon Health Authority – Public Health Division Dental Pilot Projects at this website.

Dental Pilot Projects address health disparities and create more equitable oral health care delivery systems.