The renegotiations of the federal-provincial-territorial health accord are on the horizon, and everyone is looking for a way to save money and improve health.
Sound impossible? Why don’t we put our money where our mouth is?
It’s a strange truth of Canadian public policy: the care of our lips, tongues, and throats is fully covered by public funding, but not our teeth and gums. This toothless approach to health care is a costly oversight for the public purse. A mounting body of evidence shows a correlation between poor oral health and higher incidence of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, pneumonia, and Alzheimer’s.
Tooth decay is a preventable disease and a low-cost public health intervention. A coordinated approach to oral health policy could play a major role in improving health and reducing costs over the long run. Putting Our Money Where Our Mouth Is: The Future of Dental Care in Canada is a timely compendium of facts and policies that help decision makers weigh their options for cost-effective policy that can create lasting change, one healthy smile at a time.