Mouth Care Matters is one of three major initiatives of the Lifelong Smiles Coalition, which is led by Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation (DDIAF). The other two initiatives are I-Smile™ Silver and the establishment of the Office of Education and Training within the University of Iowa College of Dentistry and Dental Clinics, all with the common goal of increasing access to oral health for older Iowans who are homebound or residents in a nursing home.
Thanks to the University of Iowa College of Dentistry for Their Sponsorship and to Des Moines Area Community College for Donating the Space. None of this would be possible without the support of Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation and the Lifelong Smiles Coalition.
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If Interested or for more information, please call 515-729-9729.
When asked what changes they would make in their personal work activities to address the delivery of oral care, responses included:
100% said the program was excellent or very good
100% said the training enhanced their knowledge about the link between oral health and one’s overall health and well-being.
100% said the training better prepared them to support other staff under their supervision and/or co-workers in providing good oral care.
Special Thanks to Mary Kelly and Carol Van Aernam, Mouth Care Matters Instructors and to Iowa Valley Community College for Providing Nursing CEUs. Iowa Valley Community College in Marshalltown may be hosting another Mouth Care Matters class in the future.
Three Senior Housing Management Direct Care Professionals who recently graduated from Prepare to Care and Mouth Care Matters shared their experiences and opinions about the training during the Iowa Assisted Living Association’s Annual Conference and some of their quotes are referenced below. Kudos to all!
“I learned more through Prepare to Care and Mouth Care Matters than I did through the CNA training. The Mouth Care Matters slides grossed me out, but because of the training, I was able to comfort an agitated individual who was in hospice care simply by cleaning the individual’s mouth.” Thomas Anderson
“The Prepare to Care and Mouth Care Matters programs teach them (direct care staff) to think outside the box.” Lee Hogg, Healthcare Coordinator, Country Meadow Place, Mason City
“Prepare to Care and Mouth Care Matters give us the confidence to do the job more effectively, and to better serve our residents and their families.” Audra Randles
“I got my CNA through a high school class, but Prepare to Care and Mouth Care Matters is different from the CNA class because it gets deeper into the training and includes information on ethics and professionalism.” Cierra Johnson
Mouth Care Matters is the first state-recognized, competency-based specialty under the Prepare to Care curriculum in the area of oral health care. Those who successfully complete the training receive a state-issued certificate.
To get a glimpse into the highlights of the first two years of the project, please click here.
Click here for Mouth Care Matters Executive Summary
Click here for Mouth Care Matters Full Evaluation Report
Des Moines Area Community College hosted the most recent MCM class at its Southridge campus. Big thanks to our instructors Mary Kelly, Carol Hooper, and Carol Van Aernam. Congratulations to our newest group of graduates!
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"The Mouth Care Matters training was excellent. The information was very valuable in terms of taking back the information to our place of employment and putting it to use in our profession as caregivers."
Fran Mancl, Certified Nursing Assistant, Stonehill Franciscan
Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) in Dubuque hosted its first MCM Class! It was a great class and thanks to the students, NICC, and Linda Rowe, Nancy Miller, and Carol Van Aernam, Dental Hygienists, and MCM instructors!
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Congratulations to 12 new Kirkwood Community College students and 2 direct care professionals from Meth Wick who learn about the importance of ensuring that they and those they serve receive good oral care.
Students Have Fun Testing the Effectiveness of Brushing Teeth Using Pink Disclosing Solution
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Congrats to grads at Iowa Valley Community College!
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Sally Chapman and Donna Cheers, Hospice Aides with HCI/VNS (Creston Iowa Area), take time from their busy schedules to attend, on behalf of Iowa CareGivers, the Iowa Dental Hygienists’ Association’s Annual Meeting in Cedar Rapids to promote the MCM training.
MCM is a one-day oral health course for those in direct care. IT is an initiative of the Lifelong Smiles Coalition and funded by Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation, Mid-Iowa Health Foundation, and Iowa Department of Public Health.
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95% of attendees indicated that taking Mouth Care Matters contributed to the likelihood they will stay in the field of direct care and with their current employer.
“After struggling with the use of temp agencies, implementing referral-based bonuses, new employee appreciation incentives, and advertising employment on everything but water and air, we think we're finally on the right track to developing and growing a class of “prepared” and reliable health care employees through a partnership with local colleges. With this free training, coupled with tuition reimbursement, a competitive wage, lucrative 401k program and full benefits, we have seen an uptick in employee development and a genuine interest and passion in their day to day routines.” Kayle Jenson, Senior Housing Management
Carol Van Aernam, Dental Hygienist demonstrates to Ann Black, AARP Iowa and Kay Vanags, Family Caregiver program, and partners in the effort, an approach to assisting an individual with brushing their teeth. I Smile Silver will also serve as a resource to family caregivers in the mini-pilot.
Donna Cheers (left), Sally Chapman (right), Hospice Aides, HCI, with Carol Van Aernam, Lifelong Smiles Coalition member and Mouth Care Matters instructor (far right), hosted an exhibit for the Lifelong Smiles Coalition and Mouth Care Matters during the Iowa Dental Hygienist’s Association’s conference at Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) in Ankeny. They were able to share, first-hand, the value of the Mouth Care Matters training. Thanks Donna and Sally!
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L to R (top): Dr. Bob Russell, Suzanne Heckenlaible, and Jeff Russell, all of Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation; Carol Van Aernam, Maribel Slinde, Pam Biklen, and Mary Ann Young, all of Iowa CareGivers; and Dr. Jeff Chaffin, Delta Dental.
Click here to read Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation’s news release
L to R (bottom): Katie Foley, Intern, Mid-Iowa Health Foundation (center) pictured with Mary Ann Young (left), and Pam Biklen (right), Iowa CareGivers
Click here to read Mid-Iowa Health Foundation’s news release
WVIK News - Quad Cities National Public Radio (NPR) shared highlights about Mouth Care Matters with listeners!
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Candeo Takes On Mouth Care Matters Training!
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Ottumwa Job Corps Adds Mouth Care Matters to Their Program
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Important Note: Individuals must first successfully complete the 6-hour Prepare to Care Core training before enrolling in the Mouth Care Matters class. We highly recommend that those interested take the Core as soon as they can in order to be ready to sign up for Mouth Care Matters classes when they become available. Call or email Mary Ann Young if you have questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
"DMACC is dedicated to the education and support of direct care professionals. DMACC strives to meet the needs of the community and we know this is a huge need." - Jaime Haub
Twenty-three dental hygienists completed the Mouth Care Matters Oral Health Specialty Instructor Training, developed and taught by Drs. Anita Stineman and Howard Cowen, University of Iowa Colleges of Nursing and Dentistry respectively.
To celebrate this project milestone a reception, sponsored by DMACC, was held for curriculum developers, funders, instructors, Life Long Smiles Coalition members, and other supporters. Thank you to everyone who joined in the celebration and congrats to the new instructor Grads!
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Pictured L to R: (front) Shonna Partelow, Wesley; Danielle Bloxham, Wesley; (back) Carly Nelson, Madrid; April Elsberry, Madrid; Danielle Walters, Madrid; Sadie Fuson, Madrid; Teresa Pena, Madrid; Sue Hyland, dental hygienist. Not pictured: Carol Van Aernam, dental hygienist; MaryAnn Young, Iowa CareGivers; Pam Biklen, Iowa CareGivers
As part of the Mouth Care Matters project, Madrid Home Communities and Wesley helped plan and conduct an oral health campaign within their organizations. A committee, with representatives from each organization led by two dental hygienists and Iowa CareGivers staff, developed materials and programs for the campaign that could easily be modified and implemented into any setting. Madrid and Wesley staff and residents participated in several activities highlighting oral health, including educational articles, posters, in-services and more! The purpose was to simply raise attention to the importance of oral health because “there is no health without oral health.”* *Surgeon General, Report on Oral Health, 2000