Senate, House Approve $150,000 for Children Oral Health Overide for Gov. Baker’s Veto

by Bob Katzen

The House 123-26, Senate 35-1, overrode Gov. Baker’s $150,000 million veto reduction (from $300,000 to $150,000) in funding for the Forsyth Institute’s Center for Children’s Oral Health to expand the Forsyth Kids program focused on children and adolescents and to study the emerging association between oral health status and academic performance.

“The program brings preventive dental care to Massachusetts children of all ages at schools, day care centers, neighborhood facilities, summer camps and public events,” according to Forsyth’s website. “For more than a decade, Forsyth Kids has helped tens of thousands of children throughout Massachusetts receive preventive dental care.”

Supporters of spending the $150,000 said that tooth decay is the most common childhood disease in the U.S. and noted that dental disease can lead to long-term health problems, pain, lack of focus in school, eating and speaking problems and low self-esteem.

In his veto message, Baker said that he reduced the funding to an amount projected to be necessary.

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