School of Medicine receives Benedum grant for oral health project in Mountain State

Friday, June 3, 2016
Leah C. Payne, Director of Public Affairs, Schools of Medicine and Pharmacy, 304-691-1713

School of Medicine receives Benedum grant for oral health project in Mountain State
Communities and families to benefit from grant

HUNTINGTON, W.Va.—Marshall University and its Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine have received a $250,000 grant from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation to provide resources and training that will expand oral health services in West Virginia.

“We are very pleased to receive this grant from the Benedum Foundation, which will help bolster programs Marshall University currently has in place,” said John M. Maher, Ph.D., vice president for research and executive director of the Marshall University Research Corporation. “Dr. Richard Crespo, with our school of medicine, is a driving force behind many of our community health programs in West Virginia and the Appalachian region. Kudos to him and his team for securing this new funding.”

Kim Tieman, health program officer for the Benedum Foundation, congratulated the university on the award.

“Marshall University’s leadership and success around oral health initiatives is reflective of the type of partnerships that we need in the state to improve the oral health of our citizens,” Tieman said.

The grant, approved by the Benedum Foundation in March, will fund education efforts to support better oral health, increase access to preventative oral health services for elementary school children as well as the perinatal population and also develop a model for direct service delivery for West Virginia’s aging population.  There are currently no such models in the state. 

“I couldn’t think of anyone better than our oral health team to lead this statewide project,” said Crespo, an associate professor with the department of family and community health. “With West Virginia having the distinction of having the oldest population in the nation, now is the time to tackle this issue.”  

Bobbi Muto, M.P.H, R.D.H., is the community oral health coordinator for Marshall University.

“West Virginia has made great strides over the past five years and it is critical that we maintain that momentum. This funding will help to carry the WV State Oral Health Plan forward,” Muto said.

Michael and Sarah Benedum named the foundation in memory of their only child, Claude Worthington Benedum, who died in 1918 at age 20. In creating the foundation in 1944, the Benedums expressed the wish that grant making be focused in West Virginia and Pittsburgh, their native and adopted homes. 

Benedum Grant #20160001 supports this project.


Date Posted: Friday, June 3, 2016