Medical-Dental Integration in Action

“I believe that everyone in this country deserves the benefit of a totally integrated heath care system with access to timely, convenient, comprehensive, and culturally sensitive care.”

– Kenneth Wright, DMD, MPH, Chair of the HSDM Initiative to Integrate Oral Health and Medicine

HSDM Alumnus at the Leading Edge

Kenneth (Ken) Wright, DMD78, MPH79, vice president of dental services for Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Northwest, will become chair of the Initiative Board as of January 2018.

Ken brings an extensive background in medical-dental integration to the role. He joined Kaiser Permanente in 2011 after retiring from an impressive 30-year career in the Navy where he held leadership roles in the National Naval Dental Center, the National Naval Medical Center, and the U.S. Marine Corps Headquarters. As Deputy Director, Medical Resources Plans and Policy on the  Chief of Naval Operations staff, Ken was responsible for delivering a balanced medical and dental program for the Navy and Marine Corps.
Full profile

Projects and research

Initiative sponsored projects and research fall under four pillars— education, clinical practice, outcomes and policy. Projects test new models of teaching and delivering integrated care, inform best practices, and provide the evidence-base required to affect systems change.

Featured Project

Harvard Launches a National Center to Evaluate Oral Health Integration in Primary Care Training

The Center for Integration of Primary Care and Oral Health (CIPCOH) will conduct research and activities to address current gaps in oral health integration in primary care training. Training will focus on providing skills to primary care providers so they can better deliver high quality, cost-effective, patient-centered care that promotes oral health, addresses oral health disparities, and meets the needs of diverse communities.

Learn about all projects


Leadership Forum to kick off with
keynote by Dr. Donald M. Berwick

September 28-29, 2018, Boston, MA

This two-day event includes speakers and panel discussions about quality, value and innovations in integrated health care. Learn More

In the News

Interprofessional Team Building with Nurse Practitioner Students

December 14, 2017
Dr. Leonard Brennan, instructor in Oral Health Policy and Epidemiology and fourth-year DMD student, Yassee Pirooz, were recently invited to teach a class of Northeastern University nurse practitioner (NP) students about the importance of interprofessional team relationships in medicine and dentistry.
Read More

The Reason Your Dental Work Isn't Covered by Medical Insurance

October 24, 2017
NBC News

Why modern dentistry's roots are in the barbershop and its insurance system is like AAA for your mouth.
Read More

Dental Schools Add An Urgent Lesson: Think Twice About Prescribing Opioids

September 26, 2017

The opioid epidemic has been fueled by soaring numbers of prescriptions written for pain medication. And often, those prescriptions are written by dentists.
Read more

Dentistry: the odd man out

September 17, 2017
Second Opinion

We need to think of the mouth the same way we do other parts of the body. This Second Opinion podcast features an interview with Dr. Bruce Donoff, Dean of Harvard School of Dental Medicine.
Listen to the podcast.

It's time to break down the wall between dentistry and medicine

July 17, 2017

In a STAT News opinion piece, Dr. Bruce Donoff, Dean of the Harvard School of Dental Medicine, writes about why the artificial division between dentistry and medicine is bad for public health and how the School is breaking barriers by educating dentists to play larger roles in managing their patients’ chronic diseases.
Read more
The HSDM Initiative to Integrate Oral Health and Medicine convenes academics, students, and corporate leaders in the health care community to develop exciting and innovative ideas around the integration of oral health and primary care — a core academic mission of Harvard School of Dental Medicine. Research demonstrates that the benefits of medical-dental integration include better health, improved quality of life, and reduced overall health care costs.
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Contact us:
The Initiative to Integrate Oral Health & Medicine
Harvard School of Dental Medicine

Copyright © 2017 The President and Fellows of Harvard College

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