• Oral Health 2020
    Growing the National Oral Health Network
  • Health Affairs Publication
    Explores the state of oral health
  • Legislative Progress on Medicaid Adult Dental in Maryland
    Bipartisan approval to SB - 169
  • Integration of Oral Health and Primary Care
    Understanding the need for integration


T he mission of the Maryland Dental Action Coalition is to develop and maintain a statewide partnership of individuals and organizations working together to improve the health of all Marylanders through increased oral health promotion, disease prevention, education, advocacy and access to oral health care.

Advocacy and Legislation

MDAC has begun work to develop a comprehensive plan targeting adult oral health in Maryland. In 2014, MDAC spearheaded a successful campaign to persuade the Governor to include an increase in Pediatric Dental Medicaid Rates to the state budget that went into effect January 1, 2015. Read more →

Interprofessional Collaboration

Through MDAC’s network of traditional and nontraditional partners, oral health education is reaching many non-dental professionals, organizations, students, and faculty members from a wide array of disciplines (e.g. medicine, dental , social work, law, pharmacy, and nursing).
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Literacy and Education

In partnership with the Maryland Office of Oral Health, MDAC created a national award-winning multimedia, bilingual oral health literacy campaign Healthy Teeth, Healthy Kids. Since 2012, more than 400,000 educational brochures in both English and Spanish have been distributed.
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Mary Backley has been appointed Executive Director of the Maryland Dental Action Coalition (MDAC). Prior to joining MDAC, Backley was Vice President for Finance and Administration at Grantmakers In Health, where she was widely credited for the successful development and implementation of multiple initiatives to grow its financial base of support.

Latest News

  • The Tooth Divide: Beauty, Class and the Story of Dentistry
    By Sarah Jaffe March 23, 2017

    Otto’s book begins and ends with the story of Deamonte Driver, a 12-year-old Maryland boy who died of an infection caused by one decaying tooth, and the system that failed him. In pointing out the flaws in that system, Otto takes us back through the history of dentistry and shows us how the dental profession evolved, separately from the rest of health care, into a mostly private industry that revolves almost entirely around one’s ability to pay. Read more →

  • Moving dental health into primary care
    By Modern Healthcare, Elizabeth Whitman January 7, 2017

    Expanded-practice dental hygienist Jessica Steele works with children at an Advantage-run Dental Learning Lab at Ensworth Elementary in Bend, Ore., helping introduce children to oral health. Read more →