Friday, January 28, 2022

The Great Lakes Region's Dental Care Shortage

Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) data as of December 31, 2021, indicated that over 64.2 million Americans lived in communities or settings designated as a dental health HPSA (health professional shortage area).  A dental health HPSA is a population group, geographic area, or facility with substandard dental care access because too few dentists serve the community relative to its population size.  HPSAs in the five-state Great Lakes region had over 8.7 million residents living in dental care shortage settings, accounting for just under 13.6% of the U.S. population who lived in dental care HPSAs.  The HRSA estimates that HPSAs in the Great Lakes states would need 1,581 more dentists to eliminate the dental care shortage in the region.  This deficit represented just over 14.1% of the nation's shortage of dentists.  A deeper look at HRSA data provides the following state-level summary view of the Great Lakes region's dental care shortage:

The Great Lakes Region's Dental Care Shortage

The Great Lakes Region's Dental Care Shortage

State (1) HPSAs (2) Population (3) Shortage
IL 244 2,723,165 497
IN 104 1,287,312 224
MI 249 1,497,513 286
OH 161 1,984,730 368
WI 122 1,226,496 206
Region 880 8,719,216 1,581
U.S. 6,803 64,236,250 11,181

(1) Designated Geographic, Population Group and Facility HPSAs with a dental care shortage
(2) Population of designated HPSAs
(3) Dental Care practitioners needed to remove HPSA Designation

Source:  Designated HPSA Quarterly Summary, 12/31/21 (HRSA)

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