Thought Leadership

Our Power Lives in the Plural

Our Power Lives in the Plural

By Michael Monopoli, DMD, MPH, MS

Executive Director, DentaQuest Foundation

 

What we believe

As the discourse concerning the direction of health care policy in the United States continues, our core belief remains constant: oral health is essential to overall health. In the current environment, where health care is caught in the political fray, this clarity of vision is more important than ever. No matter where we live or how much we make, we should have the same opportunities to live a healthy life.

Regardless of profession, age, or political affiliation, we are all affected by decisions being made in health care. A person in poor oral health is not healthy, and it’s unjust that millions of Americans, young and old, are suffering from a chronic disease that is completely preventable. As Jane Addams said, "The good we secure for ourselves in precarious and uncertain--is floating in mid-air--until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life." This is not just a political issue—it is a human one.

 

Our approach and commitment 

We at the DentaQuest Foundation have long been a convener, creating ways for people from disparate backgrounds to work together. Since 2000, we have collaborated with local, state, and national partners to raise awareness and promote oral health through community engagement, a strong dental care safety net, policy enhancement, and innovative approaches to financing and care, , now investing over $17 million annually in grants and in kind services. We believe that by bringing together the perspectives of committed individuals from diverse disciplines, we can make impactful and meaningful decisions.

We know that we must remain committed to our mission, and work in a bipartisan way to support better health for all. Together, we can turn the uncertainty of today into hope for tomorrow, and eliminate barriers to care that prevent too many people from attaining good health. In the presence of adversity, we will still press forward. Like a river, our course may change, but we never stop flowing.

 

Looking ahead

We will tirelessly continue to advocate for the many people who don't yet have essential access to prevention and care. In future articles, we will focus on specific aspects of how we are addressing the oral health challenges we face at the national, state, and community levels. We do have a long journey ahead of us. But right now, you can join our movement through our online network, where providers, policymakers, community leaders, private funders, and business leaders are working together to achieve our mission at www.oralhealth.network. The voice of change stays strong when we speak in unison.