Oral Health
Section Newsletter
Fall 2006

Message from the Chair

Dear Oral Health Section Members,


It has been an exciting two years as chair of this Oral Health Section of APHA.  A phrase that I always think of that providers use in oral health is “Open Wide.”  I offer my sincere gratitude and thanks to every one of you that did open wide your hearts and mind, and welcomed and supported me in the role of chair.  You gave your guidance, suggestions and enthusiasm, valuable time and wisdom helping the Section align and speak out on issues of access, scope of practice, and fluoridation.  Many of you worked together to review and revise policies, summarize current membership lists and reach out to prospective new members, and take on issues of both national and professional standards to assure access by improving the system.  Myron Allukian has organized information and eloquently spoken on the Alaska Dental Aide Therapist initiative on behalf of the Section.


There are several additional people that I want to give special recognition to.  I was told when I was nervous in the beginning, “Get a good secretary.”  Well, I was fortunate to have the BEST in Kathy Lituri.  She has been an amazing, tireless, good-natured, detail-oriented, and comprehensive team player.  She works well with incoming Chair Howard Pollick, who has stepped in has been helping to lead and connect.  They will provide a smooth, seamless transition, with a great sense for continuity.


The Annual Meeting always excites people, whether it involves submitting papers and posters for presentation, or screening those submitted.  Special recognition goes to Oscar Arevalo for his leadership organizing the annual meeting for two years in a row while he personally changed jobs and changed locations.  There are so many details. Then there was Hurricane Katrina that required a major shift and relocation of the 2005 conference to a new city. 


Preparation for the Annual Meeting gives us a chance to look at our current membership and outreach to new members.  It also gives a chance to review and update our current policies.  Amos Deinard took on both of these two major efforts, and he can report the committee’s finding at the business meeting. Great job, Amos.


Alice Horowitz is now on the editorial board for the American Journal of Public Health, and we are assured that she will always have positive influence on the topics and articles presented and  have sensitivity to the issues of creating improved dental health systems.


And I need to recognize Tim Cooke and the amazing job that he has done with getting a newsletter together and out as well as a Web site for the Section.  He will be greatly missed, and we all wish him and his wife a safe and exciting journey as they travel.  We are inviting someone “out there” to give a call and let us know that you are interested in filling is this vital area of communication for the Section.


As a nurse, I have had great connections with nurses in my community, and nationally through APHA sections, getting involved in identification and prevention of oral disease.  Posters in the Oral Health Section are being submitted by nurses in their partnership roles with health centers and clinics. I represented the Oral Health Section of APHA at the American Academy of Pediatrics “Partnership to Reduce Oral Health Disparities in Early Childhood” (PROHD) Grant at a meeting June 15-16,  2006 in Washington, D.C.


Of course there are so many more of you doing great work that I have not mentioned by name.  I look forward to celebrating our efforts and accomplishments at the Annual Meeting.  We’ll get to recognize a great leader in Tony Jong and initiate an award in his name recognizing talent in the field of dental health.  We’ll have our traditional awards as well.  I look forward to the networking and camaraderie of the meeting.


With best wishes to all.  Sincere thanks for your life time commitments and the inspiring work that you do.  See you at APHA!


Welcome to our pre-conference newsletter. You'll find information about the Section's schedule and awards here, but make sure you check the Section's Web site at http://www.apha-oh.org for all the latest details and a great set of resources for getting around Boston from our local liaison Dr. Raul Garcia.

Scientific Program at APHA

On behalf of the Oral Health Section, I want to invite you to participate in the APHA Annual Meeting in Boston.  Our scientific committee has developed an exciting program, a combination of this year’s theme and current issues in oral health.  Highlights include:  Access to Oral Health Care and the Alaska Dental Therapist, Oral Health Services for the Frail Elderly, Public Health and Human Rights, RWJF's Pipeline Program: where are we now and where do we go from here, etc.  For a complete list of sessions and speakers please visit the APHA Web site:


I would like to commend the extraordinary work of the members of our scientific committee:

Kathy M. Lituri, RDH, MPH
Boston University School
of Dental Medicine
--Alice Horowitz, PhD
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
--Ron Romero, DDS, MPH
New Mexico Department of Health
Woosung Sohn, DDS, PhD, DrPH
University of Michigan School of Dentistry
Clemencia Vargas, DDS, PhD
University of Maryland Dental School

These individuals served as my steering committee, led the development of our invited sessions and actively participated in the review process.  I am extremely grateful to all of them; the quality of our program is a reflection of their hard work and expertise.   Finally,   I am very pleased to announce that Dr. Woosung Sohn will serve as our scientific chair for next year’s meeting.  We are in very capable hands -- Woosung has already made a fantastic contribution.  


Thank you all for supporting our Section and its mission.  With your enthusiasm and continued commitment, we can make a difference.  I look forward to seeing you in Boston.

APHA Annual Meeting, Oral Health Schedule

American Public Health Association
134th Annual Meeting
Nov. 4-8, 2006

 The Oral Health Section Program Summary: For more detailed info visit APHA http://www.apha.org/meetings

The Oral Health Section would like to thank

Colgate Oral Pharmaceuticals,

Dentsply Professional,

LCI, Ltd.,


OMNII Oral Pharmaceuticals

for their generous support of our annual meeting events.


Location: All Scientific Sessions sponsored by the Oral Health Section will be held at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center (BCEC), 415 Summer Street.

Local Arrangements:  Please see the Section Web site (http://www.apha-oh.org) for tips on getting around Boston during the APHA meeting and for more detailed information about the Monday night Award ceremony.  Section-wide e-mails will provide updated info as needed.


Exhibit/OH Booth Hours: Sun: 2-7, Mon: 9:30-5:30, Tue: 9:30-5:30, Wed: 9-12:30



Sunday, Nov. 5, 2006
8:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m.

205.0 Oral Health Section Business Meeting I – BCEC

12:00-2:00 p.m.

APHA Opening General Session:

Keynote Speakers:  Paul E. Farmer, MD, PhD, & Helene D. Gayle, MD,MPH 

2:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m.

250.0 Oral Health Section Business Meeting II - BCEC

Monday, Nov. 06, 2006
10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.

3080.0 Oral Health Poster Session I (Poster) - BCEC

3081.0 Oral Health Poster Session II (Poster) - BCEC

3082.0 Oral Health Poster Session III (Poster) - BCEC

Moderator:  Oscar Arevalo, DDS, ScD, MBA, MS 

12:30 p.m.-2:00 p.m.

3233.0 Access to Oral Health Care and the Alaskan Therapist (Oral) – BCEC

Moderator: Myron Allukian, DDS, MPH

2:30 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

3339.0 RWJF’s Pipeline Program: Where are we now and where do we go from here? (Oral) – BCEC

Moderator:  Oscar Arevalo, DDS, ScD, MBA, MS

4:30 p.m.-6:00 p.m.
3417.0 Workforce Issues (Oral) – BCEC

Moderator:  Kathy Lituri, RDH, MPH

7:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.  The APHA Knutson Award ceremony and a reception/buffet dinner to follow, at the "The Castle" on the Boston University Charles River Campus.  Please note that we will also present the first annual APHA Jong student awards that evening.  Please see the Web site for more info and watch for section-wide e-mails for updates.

12:30 p.m.-2:00 p.m. 
4151.0 Health Effects of Fluoride and Its Implications for Policy (Oral) - BCEC

2:30 p.m.-4:00 p.m.
4245.0 Connection Between Oral Health and General Health (Oral) - BCEC 
Moderator:  Woosung Sohn, DDS, PhD, DrPH

8:30 p.m. - Stay tuned: plans for a local social event forthcoming.

Oral Health Section Announces John W. Knutson Distinguished Service Award Recipient

John Brown 

The Oral Health Section is pleased to announce that John P. Brown, BDS, MS, PhD, is the 2006 recipient of the John W. Knutson Distinguished Service Award.  This award has been presented each year since 1982 to honor an individual who has made an outstanding contribution in improving oral health in the United States.  Recipients have demonstrated sustained and exemplary accomplishments in the field of dental public health.

Dr. Brown is professor and chairman for the Department of Community Dentistry and the University of Texas Health Science Center.  He is a champion of dental public health, pediatric dentistry, and dental public health academics, mentoring over a dozen residents in a dental public health residency program that he developed.  He has served at the regional and national level regarding initiatives to improve the oral health of women and children, strongly advocating for the prevention of dental disease while improving access.  He has been a champion for community water fluoridation for over 20 years, culminating in the fluoridation of San Antonio in 2000.  On an international level, Dr. Brown served as the principal investigator for the San Antonio site of the World Health Organization’s Section International Collaborative Study.  He has authored or co-authored over 50 manuscripts and presented over 70 abstracts at national and international meetings. 

Dr. Brown has worked tirelessly for APHA.  He has served as newsletter editor and dedicates himself to the success of the Oral Health Section.  He has strengthened the policy and advocacy focus of the Section and has written or testified on numerous resolutions and position papers.  Dr. Brown received his dental degree from the University of Queensland Dental School in Brisbane, Australia, his Master of Science Degree in Dental Research from the University of Rochester, and his PhD in Oral Epidemiology from the University of Queensland.  Please join the Oral Health Section in recognizing Dr. John P. Brown, and celebrating his contributions in improving oral health worldwide, at the Section Award Ceremony on Monday.

The Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Public Health Student Awards

The APHA Oral Health Section is pleased to announce the 2006 recipients of The Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Health Pre-Professional Awards sponsored by Colgate Oral Pharmaceuticals and The Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Health Post-professional Award sponsored by OMNII Oral Pharmaceuticals. 

The awards were established in 2006 in memory of the late Anthony Westwater Jong and in recognition of his commitment to community-based dental public health, his strong and highly acclaimed mentoring of students, and his emphasis on the importance of state, local and community-based public health action.  The awards will be presented at the APHA 134th Annual Meeting and Exposition at the Oral Health Section Award ceremony, Monday, Nov. 6, 2006, 7 p.m.

The 2006 recipients of The Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Public Health Pre-Professional Awards sponsored by Colgate Oral Pharmaceuticals are:

Gabrielle F. Cannick, BS


Brandi  R. Jackson, DDS




The 2006 recipient of The Anthony Westwater Jong  Memorial Community Dental Public Health Post-professional Award sponsored by OMNII Oral Pharmaceuticals is:

Kavita Mathu-Muju, DMD, MPH



Gabrielle F. Cannick was a sixth-year student last spring in the Dental Medicine Scientist Training Program at the Medical University of South Carolina, and returned to the second year of dental school in August 2006. The DMSTP is a seven-year program which leads to the completion of the Doctor of Dental Medicine and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Cannick is the recipient of an NIH F30 Individual Predoctoral Dentist Scientist Fellowship. She spent a year working with Dr. Alice Horowitz in the area of oral cancer prevention and early detection at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research in Bethesda, Md. Cannick has presented her research at several dental research and public health annual sessions, including APHA, and has published in The Journal of the American Dental Association and the Journal of Public Health Dentistry. For her initial work in oral cancer prevention and early detection, Cannick has received awards for the Most Outstanding Presentation in Clinical Research from the Thomas P. Hinman Dental Society, the President’s Award for Excellence in Dental Research from the National Student Research Group of the American Association of Dental Research, and first place in the Predoctoral Dental Student Merit Award Competition from the American Association of Public Health Dentistry. Her project, entitled, “A Comprehensive Planning and Evaluation Method for Teaching Oral Cancer Prevention and Early Detection Skills to Dental Students,” employed a novel approach toward designing, implementing, and evaluating an oral cancer prevention and early detection intervention for dental students.


Brandi R. Jackson graduated from the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry on May 14, 2006.  She received a BA with distinction in African and Afro-American studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in May 2002.  She began a two-year residency in pediatric dentistry at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry on July 1, 2006.  She is a native of Parkton, N.C. Brandi was a founding member of the Ennead Society of Dental Volunteers, commonly referred to as Ennead.  Ennead is a student-constructed initiative designed to encourage student-led community service activities and to develop future community leaders for the state of North Carolina.  The society aims to equip student leaders with the skills and passion necessary to address access to care issues in their communities upon graduation from dental school.  Ennead desires to become a national model for dental community service among dental students.



Kavita Mathu-Muju received her DMD degree from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg in 1993. She spent the early part of her career as a contract dentist providing dental care for aboriginal children in rural Manitoba and has a long-term professional involvement in “Kindness and Action,” a Canadian volunteer dental mission group with a history of service for indigenous people in Central and South America. Kavita served as Director of the undergraduate pediatric dental program at the University of Manitoba in 2000-03. Last June she completed her final year of training in the dual MPH and certificate of pediatric dentistry residency program at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and recently joined the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry, Division of Dental Public Health, as an assistant professor.  Kavita’s project, entitled, “Opinions of Early Head Start Staff about the Provision of Preventive Dental Services by Primary Care Medical Providers,” sought to understand and improve access to primary preventive dental services for infants and toddlers enrolled in Early Head Start programs in North Carolina.


For more information about the Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Public Health Student Awards, please contact one of the 2006 Committee Co-Chairs: Amos Deinard, MD, MPH  (612-899-2147 (digital pager) deina001@umn.edu) or Kathy Lituri, RDH, MPH (617-638-5202, lituri@bu.edu).


The Pre-Professional Award, sponsored by Colgate Oral Pharmaceuticals was awarded to two students this year in recognition of an outstanding community-based research or service project of an oral health nature carried out by a pre-doctoral dental student, or a dentist who has graduated within the preceding 12 months from an ADA-accredited dental school, or a dental hygiene student, or a hygienist who has graduated from an accredited school of dental hygiene in the United States within the preceding 12 months. 


The Post-professional Award, sponsored by OMNII Oral Pharmaceuticals, was awarded to one student in recognition of an outstanding community-based research or service project of an oral health nature carried out by a dentist, physician, dental hygienist, nurse, nurse practitioner, social worker and/or other professional with an interest in oral health who is currently enrolled in an accredited school of public health or in an ADA-accredited dental public health program, or who has graduated from such a program in the preceding 12 months.


All of the recipients will receive: $200 cash award; A copy of Jong's Community Dental Health, 5th Edition; One year membership in APHA Oral Health Section; Registration fee to the APHA Annual Meeting; A plaque to be presented at the Oral Health Section Awards Ceremony, Business Meeting; and two tickets to attend the Oral Health Section Reception Dinner following the Award ceremony. In addition, the recipient of The Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Health Post-professional Award sponsored by OMNII Oral Pharmaceuticals will also receive hotel lodging and transportation to the Annual Meeting.


Tax-deductible contributions can be made to the Anthony Westwater Jong Community Dental Health Student Awards Enrichment Fund at APHA. These funds will be used to supplement, enhance, and/or enrich The Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Health  Pre-Professional Award  sponsored by Colgate Oral Pharmaceuticals and/or The Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Health  Post-professional Award sponsored by OMNII Oral Pharmaceuticals in a manner that is consistent with donor intent, time period, and event activities and within the guidelines established by the Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Health Student Awards Committee. APHA is a 501 (c)(3) organization and as such contributions to the fund are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.  The APHA Federal ID# is 13-1628688.  Please note: The fund will not be used to cover the costs associated with the solicitation of nominees, the announcement of awardees, the expenses incurred by the Anthony Westwater Jong Memorial Community Dental Health Student Awards Committee, to fund an event, reception, or dinner for the presentation of the awards, or for the costs of items not included in the award packages unless otherwise specified by donor intent. 


Checks should be made payable to:

The Anthony Westwater Jong Community Dental Health Student Awards Enrichment Fund at APHA and mailed to: The Anthony Westwater Jong Community Dental Health Student Awards Enrichment Fund at APHA c/o Fran Atkinson, American Public Health Association, 800 I Street, NW Washington, DC 20001





Monday, November 6, 2006: APHA Knutson Award ceremony

On Monday evening Nov. 6, we will hold the APHA Knutson Award ceremony, and a reception/buffet dinner to follow, at the "The Castle" on the Boston University Charles River Campus.  Please note that we will also present the first annual APHA Jong student awards that evening.


The Castle is a wonderful venue for this sort of event (please see:  http://www.bu.edu/ocs/castle/castle.html ), and we have been able to arrange for very good menu pricing as we are doing this event "internally" under the aegis of a BU departmental event.


Getting to The Castle is a bit of a schlep from the Convention Center, but then again the Convention Center is far from most everything, including almost all of the meeting hotels.  However, please note that we have arranged for a shuttle bus to pick folks up at the Convention Center (at approx. 6:20 p.m.) and transport them free of charge to The Castle.


How folks will get from The Castle back to their hotels will be up to each, but our Oral Health Section’s Local Arrangements team will be available that evening to provide guidance and advice, and call for cabs to take groups back as needed.  Fortunately, Commonwealth Avenue and its trolley line, and public bus routes, are only a block away from The Castle, so public transportation back to your hotels may be a very good option.


For more information on local arrangements for the Monday evening event, please contact Raul Garcia at rig@bu.edu


Looking forward to seeing you at APHA !  And, don’t forget to arrange for your absentee ballots !  The election is on Tuesday, Nov. 7!

Support for the Alaska Dental Health Aide and Therapist and Other Innovative Programs for Under-Served Populations

The resolution on the Alaska Dental Health Aide and Therapist and Other Innovative Programs, that was submitted by Myron Allukian and supported by the Oral Health Section leadership, was passed by the APHA Governing Council in 2005. It then became APHA policy, but was introduced as a Late-breaking Resolution. As such, the policy remains until the next Annual Meeting in Boston in November 2006. With assistance from other Oral Health Section members, including Chair-Elect Howard Pollick, Myron submitted a revised proposed policy based on suggestions from the APHA Joint Policy Committee. The revision is now available to APHA members to review. You will find that the proposed policy has been substantially amended form the 2005 version, continuing support for the Alaska program while supporting additional innovative programs for improving access to quality oral health care for all under-served populations. At the 2006 Annual Meeting, the Governing Council will consider approval of the revised version, whereupon it will become permanent APHA policy.

To view the resolution from the APHA Web site http://www.apha.org click on Members Only (or go directly to http://www.apha.org/private/ ); scroll down to Policies; click on 2006 Proposed Policies; under Group A: Health Disparities, click on the 4th item: Support for the Alaska Dental Health Aide and Therapist and Other Innovative Programs (LB1) .

Please send any comments to Howard Pollick.

Newsletter Editor and Webmaster Needed!

The Oral Health Section will be looking for a new newsletter editor and webmaster between now and the APHA Annual Meeting in November. At the moment the job is held by one person, but they could certainly be shared. If someone can be identified before the Annual Meeting and will be at the meeting in Boston, they can take part in APHA's orientation activities.

Newsletter Editor:  Accept contributions from Section leadership and members on topics of interest to section members. Prepare an online newsletter using APHA's Web-based system. Some computer experience and an Internet connection are all that is required.

Webmaster: Update Web site with Section news and activities. Add links to important oral health news and information. Keep calendar up to date. Requires some knowedge of Web site development The site is based on a simple css/html combination with no frills.

If you are interested in one of the positions or want more details, contact Kathy Lituri (lituri@bu.edu).

Action Board

Chair-Elect Howard Pollick is seeking an Oral Health Section member to replace him as the Section representative to the APHA Action Board. This is a significant role in the infrastructure of APHA -- an excellent way to get to know how APHA works and how APHA advocates to improve public health. Please contact Howard at the e-mail address below.

Staffing the Section Booth at APHA

We are looking forward to seeing many of you at the upcoming APHA Annual Meeting in Boston.  And on that note, it's time again to start the booth staffing process.  Please consider taking a shift or two.  Get a friend to join you!  The time slots are structured in a manner that is conducive to the Oral Health Section program schedule.   It’s easy, it’s fun, and it’s a great way to meet and great and network.  Simply select a time slot from the list below and contact Kathy Lituri lituri@bu.edu  (617-638-5202). 

Thank you.

Amos Deinard and Kathy Lituri, Co-Chairs, APHA OH Section Booth 2006

Sunday, Nov. 5

2:30-4:00 (Open the Booth), 4:00-5:30, 5:30-7:00 (New Connections Reception/Exhibition Hall)


Monday, Nov. 6

9:30-10:45,  10:45-12:15,  12:15-2:15,  2:15-4:15,  4:15-5:30


Tuesday, Nov. 7

9:30-10:45,  10:45-12:15,  12:15-2:15,  2:15-4:15,  4:15-5:30


Wednesday, Nov. 8

9:00-10:45,  10:45-12:30 (Close the booth)

Community Dentistry and Geriatric Oral Health Care Award

The American Dental Association's Council on Access, Prevention and Interprofessional Relations is pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Community Dentistry and Geriatric Oral Health Care Award competitions. The American Dental Association sponsors both awards through its Foundation.
As you may be aware, the Community Dentistry Award recognizes innovative programs that target a variety of community groups.  The Community Dentistry Award is supported by a generous grant from Johnson & Johnson Oral Health Products. The Geriatric Oral Health Care Award is given to programs that further the understanding and management of oral health care for the elderly.   The Geriatric Oral Health Care Award is supported by a generous grant from Pfizer Consumer Healthcare Group. For informational purposes, brochures on each of the award programs may be downloaded at http://www.ada.org/goto/accessawards.

Consider submitting your manuscripts to Preventing Chronic Disease

PCD (at www.cdc.gov/pcd ) is a peer-reviewed, Medline-indexed, electronic journal established, in 2004, to provide a forum for public health researchers and practitioners to share study results and practical experience. This open-access journal is published by the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, one of eight centers within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The mission of the journal is to address the interface between applied prevention research and public health practice in chronic disease prevention. PCD focuses on preventing diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and stroke, which are among the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. Please note that there is oral health representation on the PCD editorial board, and the journal is very interested in receiving manuscripts in the area of oral health.

The Quick Guide to Health Literacy

We are pleased to present you with an exciting new resource for public health professionals: The Quick Guide to Health Literacy. The Quick Guide is produced by the U.S. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and is written for health professionals at the national, state, and local levels. It contains:

§ A basic overview of key health literacy concepts.

§ Techniques for improving health literacy through communication, navigation, knowledge-building, and advocacy.

§ Examples of health literacy best practices.

§ Suggestions for addressing health literacy in your organization.

If you are new to health literacy, the Quick Guide will give you the information you need to become an effective advocate for improved health literacy. If you are already familiar with the topic, you will find user-friendly, action-oriented materials that can be easily referenced, reproduced, and shared with colleagues.

The Quick Guide to Health Literacy and other tools for improving health literacy can be found at www.health.gov/communication/literacy. If you would like to request a hard copy of this resource, or if you have any questions, please contact Stacy Robison at (240) 453-8271 or at stacy.robison@hhs.gov.