UA Pediatrics Resident-Physician Awarded Grant to Implement Tooth-Brushing Program for Children in Sunnyside District

The one-year American Academy of Pediatrics’ CATCH grant will enable Dr. Williamson to implement “Promoting Oral Health through the Classroom” in Tucson’s Sunnyside School District.

Sarah Williamson, MD, pediatrics resident-physician with the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson, Department of Pediatrics, was awarded a - CATCH (Community Access to Child Health) grant by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to implement “Promoting Oral Health through the Classroom” in Tucson’s Sunnyside School District.

 “There are high rates of tooth decay found by second grade in children in the district,” said Dr. Williamson. “The grant will fund the supplies to have kindergarteners in the district brush their teeth following breakfast, and learn about dental hygiene. We also will go to the schools during the year to apply fluoride varnish, while teaching the kids about oral health.”

The AAP’s CATCH program was established to support pediatricians to work within their communities so that all children have access to needed health services.

"It's terrific that Dr. Williamson was awarded this competitive advocacy grant,” said Rachel Cramton, MD, assistant professor, UA Department of Pediatrics, and Dr. Williamson’s mentor for the project. “Her project is particularly valuable because it addresses oral/dental health as a medical issue and will reach kids in need in the schools where they spend the bulk of their time. We are very proud of her hard work."