Monday, April 24, 2023

New England's Dental Care Shortage

December 31, 2022, data from the HRSA (Health Resources and Services Administration) indicated that nearly 69.8 million Americans lived in a dental health HPSA (health professional shortage area).  A dental health HPSA is a population group, geographic area, or facility where residents have substandard dental care access because too few dentists serve the area relative to the population living in the HPSA.  HPSAs in the six-state New England region of the country were home to almost 1.4 million residents, or about 2% of the U.S. population, who lived in dental care shortage areas.  The HRSA estimates that New England HPSAs would need 224 more dentists in order to eliminate the dental care shortage in the region.  This shortfall represented about 1.9% of the nation's dental care shortage.  Further examination of the HRSA's 12/31/22 data provides the following details about New England's dental care shortage:

New England's Dental Care Shortage

New England's Dental Care Shortage

State (1) HPSAs (2) Population (3) Shortage
CT 40 481,721 110
ME 96 380,414 59
MA 61 327,538 21
NH 23 35,002 9
RI 13 140,648 23
VT 15 29,428 2
Region 248 1,394,751 224
U.S. 7,313 69,766,605 11,909
% of U.S. 3.4% 2.0% 1.9%

(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, 12/31/22 (HRSA)

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