RELEASE: The North Carolina Oral Health Collaborative Receives $1.8M Grant to Help Advance Oral Health Care Access and Equity in North Carolina

Support is Largest Grant Received Focused on Oral Health

December 18, 2023

CARY, NC – The North Carolina Oral Health Collaborative (NCOHC) announced it has received a $1.8 million grant from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation – the collaborative’s largest single grant supporting oral health. The funding will help NCOHC continue its collaborative work with dental provider teams, policymakers, community organizations, academic partners, dental and public health students, and community members.

“The North Carolina Oral Health Collaborative has been at the forefront of helping catalyze efforts to make quality, affordable oral health services accessible to all people across our state,” said Daijah Davis, Blue Cross NC Foundation, Director of Oral Health. “We look forward to continuing the partnership we have developed over the past several years, and we are excited about this opportunity to support NCOHC in deepening their community engagement and advocacy capacity building for those who work in and engage with North Carolina’s oral health system.”
Specifically, the 2-year grant will support the organization’s work promoting policy change, developing and advancing workforce strategies, elevating partnerships, and engaging with communities across North Carolina.

In addition to supporting its ongoing work in these areas, the grant will help NCOHC and its partners advance the recommendations from a North Carolina Institute of Medicine (NCIOM) Oral Health Transformation Task Force Report, which is expected to be released by February 2024.

“Our team is thrilled to accept this funding from the Blue Cross NC Foundation,” said Dr. Steve Cline, NCOHC’s vice president for oral health. “We’re building on past success and launching new initiatives, and the Blue Cross NC Foundation has been an integral partner at every step in our journey as an organization. We are grateful for the opportunities this grant will open up for our team, but most importantly for the communities we serve across North Carolina.”

NCOHC, a program of the Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation, works to improve the overall health and well-being of all North Carolinians by increasing access and equity in oral health care. Throughout all its work, NCOHC connects, engages, and uplifts the voices of rural and underserved populations across the state.



The North Carolina Oral Health Collaborative (NCOHC) was established in 2013 as a program of the Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation (FHLI). In alignment with FHLI’s mission to improve the health of the whole person by leveraging the power of the whole community, NCOHC works to advance systems-level changes, increasing access and equity in care for all North Carolinians.

NCOHC envisions a future in which all North Carolinians recognize oral disease as preventable and have equitable access to optimal oral health care. Its work is guided by the principle that innovative impact is achieved through diverse stakeholder engagement, collaboration, and collective action. Learn more at

For more information, contact:
Brady Blackburn
Director of Communications
Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation