July 6, 2016

Summit to address Native oral health


A one-day summit to address important dental health issues among the state’s Native American population is scheduled for Monday, Aug. 1, at the Ramkota Inn in Bismarck, North Dakota. 

The Tribal Nation’s North Dakota Oral Health Summit is expected to attract tribal leaders, tribal health professionals, dental professionals, law makers and policy makers. Participants will identify long-term solutions to dental health disparities in North Dakota’s tribal communities and identify steps to reduce those disparities.

The event is sponsored by the National Indian Health Board and the NDSU American Indian Public Health Resource Center.

One of the featured presenters will be Donald Warne, NDSU chair of public health, associate professor and Mary J. Berg Distinguished Professorship in Women's Health.

“Our purpose for holding this meeting is to address the significant shortage in access to oral health services in North Dakota,” Warne said. “Unfortunately, it is the children in rural, underserved and reservation communities that suffer the most from lack of access. Other states, including Alaska and Minnesota, have developed creative ways to improve access to services. We are hoping to develop a plan for improving oral health access in North Dakota.”

Other scheduled presenters at the summit include:

• Mary E. Williard, director of oral health promotion, commander
U.S. Public Health Service
Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium

• Shawnda Schroeder, research assistant professor
University of North Dakota Center for Rural Health

• Kimberlie J. Yineman, director of the oral health program
North Dakota Department of Health

• Brad Hawk, Indian Health Systems administrator
North Dakota Indian Affairs Commission

• Swinomish Tribal Council representative
LaConner, Washington

• James Roberts, senior executive liaison for intergovernmental affairs
Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium

• Jaci Seefeldt, prevention coordinator
North Dakota Department of Health

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