Children's Dental Health Project

  • DC


1020 19th Street, NW
Suite 400
United States

About Us

The Children’s Dental Health Project (CDHP) creates and advances innovative policy solutions so that no child suffers from tooth decay. We are driven by the vision of all children achieving optimal oral health in order to reach their full potential. CDHP will lead the way toward a health care system that is truly inclusive of oral health—from payment to care delivery.

Founded in 1997 by Dr. Burton Edelstein, CDHP connects rigorous policy analysis with collaboration and advocacy to advance optimal oral health for all children:

  • CDHP works with policymakers and health advocates to identify strategies to prevent tooth decay. Starting with comprehensive dental care for pregnant women to reduce the transmission of cavity-causing bacteria, CDHP also promotes ways to identify and support children at high risk for tooth decay.
  • CDHP works to ensure all children have affordable comprehensive care that improves their oral health.  CDHP uses evidence to advance models that incentivize oral health, not just payment for treating the symptoms of dental disease.
  • CDHP seeks to improve accountability and quality by measuring health outcomes and the interventions most likely to achieve optimal oral health.



  • Investigates and promotes cost-effective strategies to prevent and manage childhood tooth decay
  • Works closely with federal and state agencies to improve the delivery of oral health care through Medicaid and CHIP
  • Promotes a healthy start for infants and their oral health by helping states develop strategies to ensure that more pregnant women receive dental care
  • Helped spearhead a multi-partner advocacy effort to name pediatric dental services an “Essential Health Benefit” under the Affordable Care Act and to mandate a dental benefit in the Children’s Health Insurance Program