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Dental Insurance Coverage and Unmet Dental Needs in Kansas (November 2020)

By Phillip Steiner, M.A., Emily Burgen, M.P.H., Linda J. Sheppard, J.D., Wen-Chieh Lin, Ph.D. | November 12, 2020

Dental Insurance Coverage and Unmet Dental Needs in Kansas (November 2020)

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More than one-third (36.0 percent) of Kansans reported not having dental insurance in 2017. However, across age groups and by race/ethnicity, there were distinct differences in whether individuals had dental insurance coverage, how their coverage was provided, and whether or not they had unmet dental needs.

Recognizing that oral health is integral to general health and that the lack of dental insurance is a potential barrier to accessing the oral health care system, the Kansas Health Institute, in partnership with Oral Health Kansas, conducted an analysis of Kansas data from the 2017 Kansas and Missouri Consumer Health Access Survey (KMHS). This report provides the most recent data available on dental insurance coverage in the state, including detailed information on the source of dental insurance coverage, unmet dental needs and dental visits by age group and race or ethnicity.


Virtual Conference from Oral Health Kansas: The 2020 Conference on Oral Health

On Friday, October 30, 2020, KHI Analyst Phillip Steiner, M.A., presented findings from the report at the 2020 Conference on Oral Health, which was hosted by Oral Health Kansas.

Slides from his presentation and a recording are below.


Funding for this report provided by Oral Health Kansas. The views and analysis expressed by the authors do not necessarily reflect the views of Oral Health Kansas.

The 2017 Kansas and Missouri Consumer Health Access Survey (KMHS) used in this report was funded by five regional health foundations: Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City (now known as the Health Forward Foundation), Kansas Health Foundation, Missouri Foundation for Health, REACH Healthcare Foundation and United Methodist Health Ministry Fund. RTI International designed the KMHS in collaboration with these five regional health foundations, administered the KMHS and provided the KMHS data for analysis.

This report is supported in full by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment with funding through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number #B04MC32543, Title V Maternal and Child Health Services.

The Kansas Health Institute supports effective policymaking through nonpartisan research, education and engagement. KHI believes evidence-based information, objective analysis and civil dialogue enable policy leaders to be champions for a healthier Kansas. Established in 1995 with a multiyear grant from the Kansas Health Foundation, KHI is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization based in Topeka.