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Smart Beginnings Virginia Peninsula

Smart Beginnings is part of a statewide coalition whose mission is to get children healthy and ready for kindergarten. We have many programs and initiatives to help us achieve this goal. You can find information about them on our website ~

As for this particular undertaking, here is a little background information:

  • Smart Beginnings Virginia Peninsula partnered with the Peninsula Health District to apply for funding from the DentaQuest Foundation in January 2015 to improve oral health on the Peninsula as part of the foundation’s Oral Health 2020 Initiative (the OH2020 goals are attached).
    A grant was awarded in March. We were one of four areas in Virginia (other areas are Petersburg, Roanoke and Big Stone Gap area) and one of six states (along with Michigan, Arizona, Florida, California, Pennsylvania) to receive funding.
  • We convened representatives from organizations in Hampton, Newport News, Williamsburg, etc. who meet monthly – this is the Planning Group.
    The Planning Group is comprised of school systems, DSS, hygienist, clinics, OB/GYN, dentist, Health Department, Boys & Girls’ Club, YMCA, etc.
  • During the first year, we will be focusing on assessing the community.
  • We are doing this assessment in three ways: data collection (stats), community members’ attitudes & perceptions around oral health, and providers’ opinions on oral health and their capacity to serve.
  • We are currently collecting data through phone interviews with Pediatrician, ObGyn, and Dental providers to gather facts about oral health care – dental visits, cavities, etc. There are two dedicated SBVP staff working on this.
  • We began the Community assessment mid-November and it will run through mid-to-late December. We have many of our Planning Group partners administering the surveys for us, but we will also utilize other access points to set up a table and try to get folks to complete a survey – the mall, libraries, etc.
  • We also have created an online version of the Community survey that can be emailed out.
  • We are creating a provider self-assessment tool that will be administered in December.
  • Once all of the data has been collected and dis-aggregated, the Planning Group will discuss everything and come up with a plan to address the findings.
  • The action plan will be submitted to the foundation in March of 2016.

We are trying to get a good sampling from all of Gloucester. At the end of the process (once all the data has been collected) we will probably be looking at ways to improve awareness and access to care.

There are two surveys – one for an adult to fill out for themselves and another for a parent to fill out for a their child. They are named “Adult” and “Parent for Child” versions.


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