ADA President Thanks Department of Health and Human Services for Naming Oral Health as a ‘Leading Health Indicator’

Calnon thanked the Department of Health and Human Services today for including oral health among the “leading health indicators” (LHIs) used to evaluate the nation’s progress in promoting health care objectives outlined in Healthy People 2020. In a letter to HHS Administrator Kathleen Sebelius, Dr. Calnon wrote that developing a comprehensive approach to health education and promotion, care coordination, and effective prevention is critical to improving the oral health of the underserved.

In his letter, Dr. Calnon laid out principles that the ADA believes are necessary in improving oral health access, including emphases on prevention, improving the existing model of dentistry, improving coordination between government agencies and programs, and strengthening the public-private collaboration that has already proven successful in making America’s oral health care system the best in the world.


The not-for-profit ADA is the nation’s largest dental association, representing more than 156,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADAhas advocated for the public’s health and promoted the art and scienceof dentistry since 1859. The ADA’s state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance long has been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products.

The monthly Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA’s flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit the Association’s Web site at