Past Event

Future of Medicare and Oral Health

Medicare does not currently include coverage for oral health services as a standard benefit. Nearly half of all older Americans and people with disabilities who receive Medicare benefits lack access to the care and resources they need to maintain good oral health. 

Poor oral health is linked with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and pneumonia, the risk of which increases among older adults. In particular, low-income seniors, those in rural communities and people of color are most at risk. Now, there is new momentum on Capitol Hill to expand Medicare by including dental, hearing and vision coverage for the first time.  

What could a policy change mean for people on Medicare? How might it affect the health care system? To answer these questions and more, The Hill is bringing together lawmakers, health experts, and patient advocates to discuss potential changes to Medicare and what that could mean for more integrated and equitable oral health care for millions of Americans.

Wednesday, September 29, 2021
1:00PM ET / 10:00AM PT


  • Rep. Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-CA), Member, Energy & Commerce Committee & Co-Sponsor, Medicare Dental Act of 2021
  • Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-GA), Republican Chief Deputy Whip; Member, Ways and Means Committee
  • Dr. Sharlee Burch, 2021-2022 President, American Dental Hygienists’ Association
  • Nancy LeaMond, Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy & Engagement Officer, AARP
  • Paul Gibbs, Medicare Beneficiary

Sponsor Perspective: 

  • Eleanor Fleming, PhD, DDS, MPH, FICD, Associate Professor, Meharry Medical College
  • Myechia Minter-Jordan, MD, MBA, President and CEO, CareQuest Institute for Oral Health


  • Steve Clemons, Editor-at-Large, The Hill


Questions for our speakers? Tweet us: @TheHillEvents using #TheHillMedicare


Sponsored Content Message: 


Our health system doesn’t work for everyone. People of color, those in rural communities, people with disabilities, older adults, and other historically marginalized people have been left out. Oral health is no exception. More than 74 million people lack access to dental coverage — including more than 24 million seniors and people with disabilities on Medicare. That is why CareQuest Institute for Oral Health is helping build a future where every person can reach their full potential through optimal health. Join us.



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