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Cerro Gordo county home care staff receive oral health care training

This news story was published on April 23, 2019.
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Mohawk Square, home of CG Health Dept.

MASON CITY – Research indicates that good oral health reduces the risk of pneumonia, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and other illnesses.   Recently, the Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health Home Care staff participated in “Mouth Care Matters” training to better care for clients’ oral health care needs and to recognize potential issues.

Mouth Care Matters is administered by Iowa CareGivers and enhances oral health care skills of the direct care workforce, one of the largest workforces in Iowa. The training encourages those in direct care to incorporate overall oral health care within the daily care received by the individuals they serve.

“This training gave insight to the connection between oral health care and overall health,” said Lisa Losen, the Home Care Aide Manager for the Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health. “We’re proud of our direct care staff for receiving this extra training which will continuously improve the level of care.”

What is Mouth Care Matters? There are over 450,000 adults over the age of 65 living in Iowa. Three in four adults over the age of 65 do not have dental insurance and 1/3 of these adults have untreated tooth decay (cavities).

Mouth Care Matters is a major initiative of the Lifelong Smiles Coalition, a statewide coalition formed to increase access to oral health care for older Iowans. Supported by Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation, the Coalition consists of 20 members including state agencies, advocacy organizations, nonprofits, trade associations, health professionals, academic institutions and funders.

This project is made possible with support from Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation, Mid-Iowa Health Foundation, and Iowa Department of Public Health. Iowa CareGivers administers the Mouth Care Matters program, including one-day classes, one-hour in-services, and other oral health materials.  For more information about Mouth Care Matters, visit

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