This in from Dr. Rankin: Last week, Rear Admiral Timothy Ricks, the Chief Dental Officer of the U.S. Public Health Service, paid a visit to Tufts University, School of Dental Medicine. He gave a very informative presentation with the major message being Oral Health means much more than healthy teeth. Oral health is integral to the general health and well-being of all Americans. The U.S Public Health Service includes many organizations including the Indian Health Service Federal Bureau of Prisons Health Resources and Services Administration U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Health Service Corps U.S. Coast Guard Centers of Disease Control and Prevention National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research U.S. Food and Drug Administration
Admiral Ricks also went over some of the program which may be available to our students including Indian Health Service Loan Repayment Program National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment Program Scholarship Program Long-term Training Opportunities Continuing Dental Education.
He also described how the U.S. population has changed in the last 20 years in regards to:
- Oral health disparities – persistent needs of the underserved population
- Aging of the population – Senior (over 65) population doubling (2000-2030)
- Changing workforce – Population increasing more than available dental professionals
- Mental illness & substance abuse (Teen illness & abuse has almost doubled in 10 years)
- Healthcare expenditures U.S. $3.3 trillion – China $600 billion; Canada $177 billion
- Emerging public health threats. Measles; Oropharyngeal CA
Admiral Ricks was a very credible and personable speaker. It was a very enlightening. We were fortunate to have him come by Tufts University, School of Dental Medicine.