Program Overview

In January 2018, the Local Oral Health Program, now Smile San Bernardino County (Smile SBC), was established. The program aims to work in alignment with and towards achieving goals and objectives outlined in the California State Oral Health Plan, 2018-2028.

The program is funded by the California Department of Public Health, Office of Oral Health through funds generated as results of passage of the California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act of 2016 (Proposition 56 Tobacco Tax).

Who We Assist

We assist all ages including foster children, pregnant people, individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, homeless individuals and families, individuals living with HIV/AIDS, individuals with chronic diseases, current smokers and tobacco users, rural communities, immigrants and refugees and many more.

Focus Areas

Smile SBC is tasked with improving oral health through assessment, planning, health promotion and education, population-level disease control and prevention and capacity building. For a more detailed version of our program focus areas, please take a look at our SmileSBC Strategic Plan for Oral Health.

Access to Oral Health Care

Increase the availability, accessibility and utilization of oral health services across San Bernardino County.

  • Evaluate and address known barriers by individuals and communities to accessing timely and quality oral health care.
  • Support innovative and alternative approaches that provide clinical dental services within the community to increase points of access.
  • Sustain and expand initiatives that support school-based and/or school-linked dental programs for K-12 students.
  • Maintain and expand efforts to increase access to preventive services, education and care coordination for 0-5 year old children.
  • Sustain and enhance initiatives that address unique oral health care needs of pregnant women, older adults and individuals with IDDs.

Oral Health Knowledge, Education, and Public Awareness

Empower individuals and communities with information in order to take action to improve and maintain their oral health.

  • Develop and implement a comprehensive, multifaceted, participatory and countywide public awareness campaign.
  • Leverage active community-based programs and initiatives to incorporate and disseminate oral health messages.
  • Develop and disseminate standardized education resources on oral health.
  • Identify and train a core network of community members to serve as oral health champions.

Oral Health Workforce

Expand and strengthen the workforce to meet the varied oral health care needs of San Bernardino.

  • Expand the Medi-Cal dental workforce in San Bernardino County.
  • Advocate for the expansion of existing and creation of new incentive programs (e.g. loan repayment programs) for dental providers.
  • Facilitate a stronger, more connected network of dental providers to promote collaboration and peer-to-peer learning.
  • Develop and nurture partnerships with workforce pipeline programs to increase students’ exposure to various dental professions.
  • Partner with post-secondary educational institutions to strengthen the county’s oral health workforce.

Coordination of Countywide Efforts

Promote partnerships and collective efforts to optimize resources and achieve sustained improvements for oral health.

  • Engage and educate policy decision-makers at all levels to garner and maintain support for regional oral health efforts.
  • Facilitate collaboration among stakeholders to leverage resources and mobilize action.
  • Incorporate oral health into all planning efforts for community improvement.

Integration of Services (Medical, Dental and Other)

Empower service providers to improve the overall health and well-being of individuals through integrated approaches to care.

  • Increase oral health knowledge of non-dental healthcare providers and staff through collaboration.
  • Promote and advocate for the integration of oral health guidance into pre-conception, pregnancy, postpartum care and services into well-child visits.
  • Increase engagement of dental providers to promote healthy behaviors among their patients.

Measurement and Evaluation

Implement a comprehensive data collection, analysis and reporting system to support countywide oral health efforts.

  • Develop and implement a countywide surveillance system for ongoing monitoring of oral health in the county.
  • Develop and implement an evaluation system to assess the effectiveness and impact of countywide oral health initiatives.
  • Translate data into digestible and effective insights for partners to facilitate better utilization of information for action.
Oral Health Status in the County
Kindergarten students that have had tooth decay
3rd grade students that have had tooth decay
Educational Materials

Funded by the California Department of Public Health under contract #22-10191