Oral Health/Anderson Center for Dental Care

Mother and children brushing teethThe Anderson Center for Dental Care was established in 1996 to honor the legacy of Dr. Albert L. Anderson. Dr. Anderson was a highly respected pediatric dentist in San Diego who was dedicated to taking care of the dental needs of pediatric patients, especially those with special healthcare needs.

The goal of the Anderson Center is to improve the oral health of all children in San Diego County, particularly those with early childhood caries (ECC), disabilities or complex medical conditions through:

  • Community and professional education
  • Improved access to care
  • Advocacy
  • Treatment funding
  • Research

Community and Professional Education

  • Trains pediatricians and ob/gyns and their staffs about the importance of oral health to overall health and methods for improving the oral health of young children and children with special healthcare needs.
  • Provides training for general dentists about treating very young children, children with special needs and pregnant women.
  • Reaches dental and medical providers and auxiliaries through national, state and community presentations, continuing education courses, conferences and Grand Rounds.
  • Educates parents and caregivers of children with special needs about the effects of dental disease on their children’s health, adaptive techniques in daily oral hygiene, what to expect at the first dental visit, and how to obtain dental treatment through a qualified provider.
  • Conducts oral health education sessions for at-risk youth through the Juvenile Hall Wellness Program.

Resources for Parents & Providers

Improved Access to Care

  • Conducts oral health assessments at the San Diego Regional Center for the Developmentally Disabled locations in San Marcos and San Diego.
  • Provides intensive interventions in collaboration with the San Diego Regional Center for the Developmentally Disabled. Individualized instruction for parents, teachers and service coordinators focuses on adaptive daily oral hygiene, caries risk reduction, care coordination and treatment referrals. Interventions are provided in English and Spanish.
  • Provides community oral health assessments.

Advocacy and Research

  • Participates at the local and state level in coalitions and other groups.
  • Advocates for improved dental services for children and adults with disabilities.
  • Conducts community- and hospital-based research related to oral health.

Treatment Funding

Provides limited funding for young children and children with special needs who are uninsured, underinsured and have limited access to care; established funding criteria apply.


To make a donation to help improve children’s oral health or for more information about the Anderson Center, please call 858-576-1700, ext. 4804 or 4801.