ADA shares support for House-passed workforce bill

A Stronger Workforce for America Act supports job training for dental staff

With dental practices nationwide experiencing ongoing staffing shortages, a new bill aims to help strengthen workforce development and skills training programs for dental hygienists and assistants.

The A Stronger Workforce for America Act would update the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which established many workforce development programs and skills training programs. 

The new legislation, which passed the House in early April, would provide individual training accounts and on-the-job training, strengthen community college workforce education programs to align with jobs like dental hygienists and assisting, and provide flexibility for states to create innovative workforce programs.

The ADA sent two separate letters April 24, one addressed to Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., chair of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, and one encouraging the Senate to pass the bill. 

In the letter to Rep. Foxx, the Association thanked her for introducing and advancing H.R. 6655, stating that the legislation’s “commitment to increased support for skills development would be a step towards alleviating this challenge” of hiring professional dental staff.

“Improving the dental workforce pipeline so that all Americans can have better access to dental care is among the ADA’s top priorities, and you can count on the ADA as a partner in your efforts to address deficits in our workforce,” the letter said. 

In its letter to the Senate, which has not yet taken up the A Stronger Workforce for America Act, the ADA urged passage of the bill. The Association also urged passage of the Action for Dental Health Act, which would increase oral health care access by extending the law through 2026, support workforce and oral health programs, and strengthen the public/private safety net and bring dental health education and disease prevention into underserved communities. 

“The vast majority of America’s dentists are finding it very challenging to hire professional dental staff, and H.R. 6655’s commitment to increased support for skills development would be a step towards alleviating this challenge. We also ask that you take up and pass S. 2891, the Action for Dental Health Act of 2023,” the ADA said. 

To learn more about the ADA’s advocacy efforts, visit

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