Project Title: FY 22 Part C Capacity Development – Dental Equipment, Applicant Organization Name: St. John’s Well Child and Family Center, Address: 808 W. 58th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90037, Project Director: Michael Beral, DDS, Voice: 323.541.1600 Ext. 1010, Fax: 323.541.1601, email@example.com , Website: www.wellchild.org, Grant Program Funds Requested: $150,000. St. John’s Well Child and Family Center (St. John’s) is a network of 20 federally qualified health centers (FQHC). We have provided comprehensive HIV care and treatment for 14 years. We are respectfully requesting an award from the HIV/AIDS Bureau’s Ryan White HIV/AIDS Part C Capacity Development Program in the amount of $150,000 for Dental Equipment for Expanding Dental Service Capacity under the Infrastructure Development category of the grant program. The proposed equipment and supplies to be purchased to refurbish four dental operatories at our Williams Health Center, which shares a site with St. John’s flagship PRIME HIV Clinic, will specifically improve the gap in rates of access to oral health services for Black and Latinx low-income PLWH who are current or future patients of St. John’s. St. John’s system of care is located in South Los Angeles (LA), a high-poverty area of the County whose population is disproportionately underserved and un-/underinsured, and experiences significantly poorer health outcomes overall than the rest of the County. South LA is home to the second highest rate of HIV infection in Los Angeles, with 6,710 people living with HIV (PLWH) in the area. PLWH in South LA remain critically underserved, despite efforts of St. John’s and other local providers. They experience disproportionate rates of housing insecurity, mental health and substance misuse, and other socioeconomic and cultural barriers to care that impact their ability to stay in medical care and adhere to antiretroviral therapy (ART) and participate in other critical services such as or
al health care. Intensive medical care management addresses their health care, psychosocial, housing, and other needs; reduces barriers; and improves their retention in care and adherence to ART, which are critical to achieving viral load suppression. Participation in oral health care services is critical for PLWH, because of the prevalence of oral diseases that often indicate progression of HIV disease and how oral health problems impact patients’ ability to adhere to their HIV treatment regimen, therefore increasing risk of disease progression and undermining viral suppression. In 2020 and 2021, only 25% of St. John’s PLWH patient population accessed dental services overall, and the rate among patients at our Williams site was even lower, in part due to older and failing operatory equipment that needs to be updated. Implementation of this project will increase utilization of dental services among PLWH, improve patient experience by reducing wait times and increasing comfort, and ensure consistent quality of care. The goal of the project is to enhance and expand oral health care services capacity for PLWH through the purchase of new dental equipment. Objectives are to increase available dental appointment slots by 25% by replacing outdated equipment; increase rate of PLWH medical patients who access dental care by 15% by expanding targeted outreach and engagement strategies; and ensure 90% of dental HIV patients aree satisfied with the care they receive. St. John’s patients are significantly representative of population groups severely impacted by HIV/AIDS, namely transwomen, young men of color who have sex with other men, and African American females. St. John’s requests a funding preference, Qualification 2: Underserved Populations, which demonstrates St. John’s dedication to providing primary care services to underserved populations with respect to HIV-related health services.