CareQuest Institute Awards $2.7 Million in Grants to Help Advance Health Equity

CareQuest Institute for Oral Health


CareQuest Institute for Oral Health, a leading national nonprofit focused on creating a more accessible, equitable, and integrated oral health system, has awarded more than $2.7 million in grant funds so far this year to help advance equity through oral health. The grants, awarded to nine organizations, support on-the-ground efforts across the country to dismantle unjust structures and systems that drive disparities related to access to care, treatment, and outcomes.

CareQuest Institute

“Our philanthropy strategy is rooted in our commitment to racial and health equity and the intentional engagement of communities most often harmed by the existing oral health system,” said CareQuest Institute chief health equity officer Kaz Rafia, DDS, MBA, MPH. “We’re proud to support these organizations and their work with historically marginalized populations toward a more equitable health care system through community-driven solutions.”

Each year, CareQuest Institute awards $14 million in grants, with a focus on collaborating with organizations that embody and reflect the communities that have historically been hurt by glaring inequities in oral health, including racial and ethnic minorities, immigrants, refugees, persons with disabilities, veterans, and tribal and rural communities.

This quarter, CareQuest Institute provided grants to the following organizations:

Achieva/The Arc of Greater Pittsburgh ($148,000)

This grant supports advocacy efforts to designate people with disabilities as a Medically Underserved Population on a state-wide and national scale, which would increase access to primary, behavioral, and oral health care through federal funding opportunities.

Alabama Arise ($148,500)

This grant supports the Cover Alabama Coalition, a nonpartisan alliance of over 100 community partners, consumer groups, businesses, health care providers and faith groups advocating for the state of Alabama to provide quality, affordable health coverage to its residents and implement a sustainable health care system.

Community Catalyst ($485,000)

This grant supports federal and state advocacy efforts to advance comprehensive health coverage, inclusive of oral health. It also supports technical assistance and training on equity-driven community engagement strategies for oral health systems change.

Dental Connections, Inc. ($50,000)

This grant supports the Iowa Smiles pilot project which is aimed at improving care coordination and public health partnerships to improve oral health for refugee communities living in Iowa.

Health Care for All ($215,000)

This grant helps expand access to oral health care in Massachusetts through community-driven policy advocacy related to integration, telehealth, coalition-building, workforce solutions, and expansion of benefits to all children regardless of immigration status.

Hispanic Dental Association ($264,500)

This grant supports critical research on topics related to oral health outcomes and access for Hispanic and Latinx populations, the development of policy recommendations to broaden access to oral health care for this population, and the dissemination of the Hispanic Dental Association’s white paper Addressing the Oral Health Needs of Hispanics in the U.S to key oral health stakeholders across the country.

Maryland Dental Action Coalition ($150,802)

This grant supports implementation efforts for Maryland’s newly expanded Medicaid dental coverage including, consumer outreach and education, care coordination engagement, and continued advocacy for policies that address barriers to care for vulnerable adults.

Maine Equal Justice Partners ($105,358)

This grant supports the facilitation of consumer input and feedback within the implementation of Maine’s Medicaid adult dental benefit and advocacy for expansion of Medicaid to all Mainers regardless of immigration status.

Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers ($150,000)

This grant supports the launch of a project that will design, implement, and spread the use of new communication tools within racially discordant patient-provider relationships to reduce the impacts of structural racism in health care.

To learn more about CareQuest Institute’s philanthropy work, click here.

About CareQuest Institute for Oral Health

CareQuest Institute for Oral Health is a national nonprofit championing a more equitable future where every person can reach their full potential through excellent health. We do this through our work in philanthropy, analytics and data insights, health transformation, policy and advocacy, and education as well as our leadership in dental benefits and innovation advancements.

We collaborate with thought leaders, health care providers, patients, and local, state, and federal stakeholders, to accelerate oral health care transformation and create a system designed for everyone.

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