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Awards


KIRKSVILLE, Mo. The Missouri Foundation for Health (MFH) recently awarded a $1 million grant (effective April 1, 2014) to A.T. Still University (ATSU) to assist the University with the design and construction of a 79,000-square-foot dental education and oral health clinic in St. Louis. This high-need dental clinic will serve as the primary clinical education site for dental students in ATSU’s Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health (ATSU-MOSDOH) enabling more than 39,000 patient visits per year in the St. Louis metro area. The clinic is expected to have up to 95 dental chairs for provision of care to patients of all ages.

ATSU President Craig M. Phelps, DO, ’84, states “Seeing the new dental clinic come to life is a true testament of the University’s mission. Without the support of partners like MFH, we may not have the opportunity to someday see children in these communities pursue their own healthcare careers and return to work in a clinic like this one. When the mission to serve comes full circle, together we will have changed the face of healthcare and made a real difference in our state.”

The goal of ATSU-MOSDOH is to educate a new generation of community-minded dentists who will help fill widespread oral healthcare workforce gaps in rural and urban communities, specifically within safety-net settings where outreach to underserved patients is achieved.

Unlike any other school in the Midwest, graduates of ATSU-MOSDOH will earn the doctor of dental medicine (DMD) degree along with a certificate or master’s degree in public health. The first class of 42 students started at MOSDOH on Oct. 1, 2013, and will transition to the newly completed clinic in June 2015.

This 2014 award from MFH marks a cumulative $4 million investment in the development of ATSU-MOSDOH – the only dental school in MFH’s service area.

“MFH is pleased to partner with an organization like ATSU-MOSDOH, with its mission to address the oral health needs of the underserved in our state. The new St. Louis dental education clinic is going to make a positive difference, increasing oral healthcare access for many who have nowhere else to go,” said Web Brown, MSW, MFH program director, oral health.

Missourians, particularly high-risk populations, continue to struggle in terms of accessing dental care services. The state ranks 41st in the nation relative to adults who visit a dentist annually. Services to be provided at the new clinic include oral health promotion/disease prevention, oral surgery, periodontics, pediatric dentistry, radiography, restorations, extractions, endodontics, fabrication and repair of dentures, implants, and treatment of chronic disease.

ATSU-MOSDOH students will work directly with a full spectrum of dental professionals and dental team members. The School will produce caring, culturally proficient, technologically adept dentists with a strong background in community-based dentistry. The students trained within this facility will develop treatment plans for not only individual patients, but will also have the knowledge and capability to develop oral health promotion/disease prevention solutions for entire communities,” said Christopher Halliday, DDS, MPH, dean, ATSU-MOSDOH.

During the third and fourth academic years, dental students, working under faculty supervision, will provide much needed care and service to disadvantaged populations by working in community-based clinics – both the primary location in St. Louis and in selected community health center clinics throughout Missouri.

MOSDOH graduates are expected to be leaders in their communities and managers of public, not-for-profit, and private sector oral health organizations. This workforce expansion aims to incrementally decrease the maldistribution and shortage of dental providers through Missouri and the Midwest. ATSU-MOSDOH remains grateful to the MFH for continued investment in this innovative workforce education model.

Missouri Foundation for Health is a philanthropic organization whose vision is to improve the health of the people in the communities it serves. 

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ADEAGies Foundation Announces Winners of the 2014 William J. Gies Awards of Vision, Innovation and Achievement

A.T. Still University’s Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health (ATSU-ASDOH) has been awarded the Gies Award for Outstanding Innovation by the American Dental Education Association (ADEA).

The Gies Awards, named after dental education pioneer William J. Gies, Ph.D., honor individuals and organizations exemplifying dedication to the highest standards of vision, innovation and achievement in dental education, research and leadership.

“This prestigious award, the most preeminent award in dental education, recognizes ASDOH’s commitment to innovation and community service,” said ATSU-ASDOH Dean Jack Dillenberg, DDS, MPH. “ASDOH’s unique culture honors our students, faculty and staff, and promotes public health principles while producing community leaders committed to improving the overall health of the communities they serve. We are honored for this national recognition and look forward to continuing our innovative advancements in oral health, community service, and dental education.”

The Gies Awards will be presented March 17, 2014 at a ceremony held in conjunction with the 2014 ADEA Annual Session & Exhibition, taking place March 15-18, in San Antonio, TX. The 2014 honorees were selected by a distinguished panel of judges consisting of the ADEAGies Foundation Board of Trustees.

Previous Gies Award winners include University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine (2013, Innovation category), University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry (2012, Innovation category),  Columbia University College of Dental Medicine (2009, Vision category), Harvard School of Dental Medicine  (2008, Vision category), University of North Carolina Craniofacial Center (2013, Achievement category), Dalhousie University Faculty of Dentistry (2012, Achievement category), and Tufts University School of Dental Medicine (2011, Achievement category).

“ASDOH continues to innovate and redefine dental education,” said Roy Holexa, DDS, director, comprehensive care unit and assistant professor, ATSU-ASDOH. “Clinical services in pain management, dental sleep medicine, as well as a mobile application for dental care are being developed, and this is only the beginning.”

The William J. Gies (pronounced guys) Foundation was established in 1950 by colleagues and admirers of Dr. Gies with seed funds raised by the American College of Dentists. It was a private foundation and the first U.S. foundation to support dental education and scholarship. In 2002, it joined with the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) to form ADEA Gies Foundation, a public foundation.

 

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MFS14_Logo_200x200Victory Media, the premier media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life, has named A.T. Still University (ATSU) to the coveted Military Friendly Schools® list. The 2014 Military Friendly Schools® list honors the top 20 percent of colleges, universities, and trade schools in the country that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans, and spouses as students and ensure their success on campus. In the 2012-13 academic  year, ATSU had 126 students serving in the U.S. Military.

“Inclusion on the 2014 list of Military Friendly Schools® shows ATSU’s commitment to providing a supportive environment for military students,” said Sean Collins, vice president at Victory Media and a nine-year Navy veteran. “The need for education is growing and our mission is to provide the military community with transparent, world-class resources to assist in their search for schools.”  Complete survey methodology is available at militaryfriendlyschools.com/Article/methodology-press-kit.

Serving the U.S. Air Force, Army, and Navy, military students from ATSU-Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (ATSU-KCOM) and ATSU-School of Osteopathic Medicine (ATSU-SOMA) represent the majority of ATSU students who answer our nation’s calling. Eight percent of ATSU-KCOM students and five and a half percent of ATSU-SOMA students match into military residencies.

A percentage of osteopathic medical students in the military are recipients of the Health Professions Scholarship Program (HPSP), which offers prospective military physicians a paid medical education in exchange for service as a commissioned medical officer.

KCOM and SOMA military students on HPSP

Air Force = 35%
Army = 37%
Navy = 28%

SAMOPS organization on campus

The Student Association of Military Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons provides support and guidance to members with respect to military customs and training during medical school. It also helps members better understand their roll in military medicine as a commissioned officer and healthcare provider.

The Military Friendly Schools® media and website, found at www.militaryfriendlyschools.com, feature the list, interactive tools, and search functionality to help military students find the best school to suit their unique needs and preferences. The 1,868 colleges, universities, and trade schools on this year’s list exhibit leading practices in the recruitment and retention of students with military experience.  These schools have world-class programs and policies for student support on campus, academic accreditation, credit policies, flexibility, and other services to those who served. 

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KIRKSVILLE, Mo.- A.T. Still University’s (ATSU) online Master of Public Health program has been named among “The Best Public Health Masters Degree Programs for the 2013-14 Academic Year.” This distinction ranks ATSU’s among the nation’s top 50 health graduate programs by Masters Degree Online. The ranking was based on teacher surveys, student feedback, and experts in the public health field. Masters Degree Online offers advice and information on various masters programs in the country.

ATSU’s School of Health Management offers a master of public health degree that allows students to choose from a general or dental concentration. Both programs are designed for working professionals and can be completed online.

The mission of ATSU’s Master of Public Health program is to prepare public health professionals for leadership in advancing public health; addressing health disparities locally, nationally, and globally; and promoting individual and community health and well-being.

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KIRKSVILLE, Mo. – The Missouri Foundation for Health (MFH) recently awarded a Year 3, $1.5 million grant (effective April 1, 2013) to A.T. Still University (ATSU) to assist the University with further development of its new and innovative dental school based in Kirksville, Mo. MFH has provided $1.5 million since 2011 to assist the University with the initial feasibility/planning and development phases. ATSU plans to open its innovative Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health (ATSU-MOSDOH) with its first class of 42 students in the fall of 2013, pending accreditation.

The goal of ATSU-MOSDOH is to educate and produce a new generation of community-minded dentists who will help fill widespread oral healthcare workforce gaps in rural and urban communities, specifically within safety-net settings where outreach to underserved patients is achieved. The curriculum includes a focus on public health.

ATSU President Craig M. Phelps, DO, states, “MFH and ATSU have similar missions focused on improving and increasing access to oral healthcare among Missouri’s most vulnerable populations. With the ongoing support provided by MFH and the creation of strong partnerships with Missouri’s community health centers (CHCs), ATSU is confident its new community and public health-focused dental school will successfully fulfill its mission and increase opportunities for inter-professional education among providers statewide.”

“We are proud to partner with ATSU’s Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health and its commitment to increasing oral health services to Missourians,” said Robert Hughes, President and CEO of Missouri Foundation for Health. “The School’s dedication to serving the underserved has the potential to have an exceptionally significant impact on dental and oral health services in Missouri.”

Missourians, particularly high-risk populations, continue to struggle in terms of accessing dental care services. The state ranks 41st in the nation relative to adults who visit a dentist annually. In particular, adults aged 35-44 years with less than a high school education experience untreated tooth decay nearly three times that of adults with at least some college education. Access to care is compounded by a lack of dental insurance, geographic and financial barriers, and shortages of dental providers—among other factors. Approximately 70 dentists are retiring each year in the state, while only about 45-50 are starting new dental practices. In essence, Missouri’s overall supply of dentists is declining, while the state’s population and demand for dentists are rising. ATSU’s intent is to respond to this growing gap in oral healthcare.

Christopher G. Halliday, DDS, MPH, serves as the inaugural dean of ATSU-MOSDOH. Dr. Halliday’s vast professional experiences include serving the underserved in areas as remote as Barrow, Alaska, for three years; and serving seven years with American Indian populations in New Mexico and Arizona. In several posts in Washington, D.C., he was a leading advocate for access to dental care and possesses extensive expertise in the fields of oral/public health – a track record that sets a strong example for ATSU-MOSDOH faculty and incoming students.

“ATSU-MOSDOH will utilize a progressive curriculum, which fosters an inter-professional learning environment,” said Dr. Halliday. “We will train dentists to treat individual patients and assure that they are capable of developing oral health promotion and disease prevention programs for entire communities.”

ATSU’s emerging four-year dental curriculum in Missouri will involve two years of pre-clinical, interdisciplinary oral health education on the University’s Kirksville campus in a new 62,000-square-foot, $26 million, state- of-the-art educational facility—which is slated for completion in June 2013. The final two clinical education years will be delivered primarily in cooperation with Grace Hill Health Centers Inc. in St. Louis, Mo., via a new 50,000-square-foot, $23 million clinic and via collaborating CHC partner sites throughout Missouri and beyond. This community-based clinical model sets ATSU’s Missouri dental school apart from others and maximizes the best teaching resources of academic and public health dentists.

“During the third and fourth academic years, dental students will provide much needed care and service to disadvantaged populations by working in community-based clinics,” added Dr. Halliday. “Through community service and scholarly activity, our goal is to raise awareness within our graduates of the significant impact and role oral health has on the overall health status of vulnerable populations, thereby creating a new generation of oral healthcare providers for today’s complex healthcare environment.”

Successful ATSU-MOSDOH graduates will earn the doctor of dental medicine (DMD) degree plus a certificate (or optional master’s degree) in Public Health, the latter in cooperation with ATSU’s online School of Health Management. In addition to the public health emphasis, the curriculum interweaves human systems and dental science courses to enable graduates to understand, analyze, and make decisions about disease, which are in the best interests of their patients, patient families, and communities.

“We are grateful for the continued support provided from MFH during the development of Missouri’s newest dental school,” adds Dr. Phelps. “ATSU-MOSDOH has the potential to transform dental education by addressing
the shortage of dental providers and improving access to oral healthcare.”

Once launched, ATSU-MOSDOH will be one of only two dental schools in Missouri and the only dental school in the Midwest dedicated, at a mission level, to enhancing oral healthcare for the underserved.

Missouri Foundation for Health is an independent philanthropic foundation dedicated to improving the health of people in our region. MFH works as a changemaker, educator and partner to promote community health and increase access to care for the uninsured and underserved.

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