Every February the Connecting Kids to Coverage National Campaign, along with our partners and grantees, observes National Children’s Dental Health Month. But oral health is important year-round, so the Campaign is taking the opportunity again this month to shine a light on dental health to help ensure a child’s overall health. Dental issues can cause more than just toothaches in kids. Poor oral health can impact their ability to focus in the classroom and even cause them to miss school. Prolonged dental health issues are also linked to several comorbidities, like cardiovascular disease and Type 2 diabetes, that can affect overall health well beyond childhood.
Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provide coverage for dental care for kids and teens up to age 19, including regular check-ups, x-rays, fluoride treatments, dental sealants, and fillings. Coverage is also available for people during pregnancy, when oral health is particularly important. Visiting the dentist regularly during pregnancy can reduce the odds of low birthweight, preterm birth, and other health complications that may occur during pregnancy.
The Campaign is excited to share new resources geared toward improving oral health that will help partners and grantees reach more families in their communities and encourage them to enroll in Medicaid and CHIP to access important dental services. You can find these new items and more on InsureKidsNow.gov and the Oral Health Initiative page.
- Dental Health Coloring Pages – These ready-to-print coloring pages can be shared with families in your community and are a great way to engage children while also reminding parents and caregivers about the importance of oral health care. The coloring pages are currently available in English and Spanish.
- “Think Teeth” Materials in New Languages – Our “Think Teeth” dental health poster, flyer, and tear pads are now available in 24 languages including English, Spanish, Amharic, Armenian, Arabic, Burmese, Chinese, French, Farsi, German, Greek, Haitian Creole, Hmong, Italian, Korean, Khmer, Lingala, Marshallese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Somali, Tagalog, and Vietnamese.
For additional materials, including social graphics, videos, email signatures, newsletter templates, text messages, and videos that cover a wide range of CKC initiatives, please visit the Outreach Tool Library.
If you weren’t able to join our most recent webinar, “Health Equity and Childhood Oral Health: Improving Access to Care with Medicaid and CHIP,” you can watch it now by visiting the webinar archive on InsureKidsNow.gov! You’ll get an in-depth overview of the comprehensive dental care Medicaid and CHIP health coverage provides, data on disparities across dental health, highlights on the importance of oral health during pregnancy, insight on how best to reach families, and resources to support equitable outreach and enrollment.
Don’t Forget! Medicaid & CHIP Renewals Are Coming
At the start of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency in March 2020, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) temporarily waived certain renewal requirements and conditions. The easing of these rules helped prevent people with Medicaid and CHIP from losing their coverage during the pandemic. However, states are restarting Medicaid and CHIP eligibility reviews. According to some estimates, up to 15 million people could lose their current Medicaid or CHIP coverage during this process. Now is a critical time to remind families enrolled in Medicaid or CHIP to update their contact information with their state Medicaid office so states can reach them with vital renewal information. The Campaign is committed to informing families about these upcoming changes so kids can continue to have access to health coverage.
You can help families get ready to renew their Medicaid and CHIP coverage by reminding them to update their contact information with their local state Medicaid office and monitor their mailbox for important renewal information. Partners can also visit Medicaid.gov/unwinding for more information, including helpful resources, like the Unwinding Toolkit, and more. Beneficiaries can visit Medicaid.gov/renewals for more information about Medicaid or CHIP renewal.
- Save Your Vision Month (March)
- National Nutrition Month (March)
- National Doctor’s Day (March 30)
- Autism Awareness Month (April)
- Sports Eye Safety Month (April)
- Public Health Week (April 3-9)
- Black Maternal Health Week (April 4-17)
- Earth Day (April 22)
- National Infant Immunization Week (April 24-30)
Stay Connected with the Campaign
- Share our Campaign materials. Our ever-growing, Outreach Tool Library features a variety of targeted resources to use in your outreach and enrollment efforts, available in multiple formats and languages.
- Contact us. To get more involved with the Campaign, contact us via email at ConnectingKids@cms.hhs.gov.
- Follow the Campaign on Twitter. Remember to re-tweet or share our messages from @IKNGov with your social network and be sure to use our #Enroll365 and #KidsEnroll hashtags in your posts.
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