Ability of Dental Therapists to Help Underserved in Oregon Faces Barriers
In 2021, the Oregon state legislature created licensure for dental therapists to treat patients with limited ability to access dental care in traditional private practices. Three years later, only 13 dental therapists have been licensed and the pilot training program at Pacific University needs $1 million to move forward. Organized dentistry remains opposed to the licensure of dental therapists in the state and lobbyists have succeeded in restricting the path to licensure for those interested in becoming dental therapists. Many parts of rural Oregon have few or no dentists. Click here to read more.